Abstract

Newly developed or advanced methods of ultrasonography and MR imaging provide combined anatomical and quantitative functional information about diffuse and focal liver diseases. Ultrasound elastography has a central role for staging liver fibrosis and an increasing role in grading portal hypertension; dynamic contrast-enhanced ultrasonography may improve tumor characterization. In clinical practice, MR imaging examinations currently include diffusion-weighted and dynamic MR imaging, enhanced with extracellular or hepatobiliary contrast agents. Moreover, quantitative parameters obtained with diffusion-weighted MR imaging, dynamic contrast-enhanced MR imaging and MR elastography have the potential to characterize further diffuse and focal liver diseases, by adding information about tissue cellularity, perfusion, hepatocyte transport function and visco-elasticity. The multiparametric capability of ultrasonography and more markedly of MR imaging gives the opportunity for high diagnostic performance by combining imaging biomarkers. However, image acquisition and post-processing methods should be further standardized and validated in multicenter trials.

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