Backgrounds and aims The aim of our study was to determine the usefulness and feasibility of transient elastography (FibroScan) assessing liver stiffness and hepatic fat deposition in obese children.
Methods Obese children (Obese group; BMI-SDS above 90th percentile) and non-obese children without liver disease (Control group) were examined for liver stiffness measurement (LSM) with simultaneous controlled attenuation parameter (CAP) using Fibroscan. LSM and CAP were compared with clinical, biochemical, ultrasound and histological data.
Results Obese group (n = 40, 12.4 y ± 3.6 y) and the control group (n = 78, 10.6 y ± 4.2 y) were evaluated for the study. Liver biopsy was performed in 5 patients. The CAP was significantly correlated with ultrasound fatty liver score (r = 0.806, p = 0.028) and histological steatosis grade (r = 0.819, p = 0.016). The LSM was significantly correlated with histological fibrosis grade (r = 0.848, p = 0.005). The CAP of the obese group (293.27 ± 55.72 dB/m) showed significantly higher value than control group (179.45 ± 44.75dB/m) (p < 0.0001). The LSM showed significantly higher value in the obese group compared to the control group (5.7 ± 2.3 kPa vs 3.9 ± 0.9 kPa, p < 0.0001). In the control group, no biochemical parameters were correlated with LSM or CAP. In the obese group, the LSM correlated to the aspartate aminotransferase (r = 0.694, p < 0.0001) and the alanine aminotransferase (r = 0.6748, p < 0.0001), whereas the CAP correlated to no parameters.
Conclusions FibroScan is a non-invasive tool to assess the liver stiffness and hepatic fat deposition simultaneously thus useful as a screening tool for nonalcoholic fatty liver disease especially in obese children.