Diagnostic value of Doppler ultrasound in the assessment of liver cirrhosis in children: Histopathological correlation

Waldemar Gorka*, Amir Kagalwalla, Brian J. McParland, Yasmeen Kagalwalla, Abdullah Al Zaben

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


We have correlated flow abnormalities in the hepatic vasculature with histological findings in the liver to determine the accuracy of Doppler ultrasound in the diagnosis of liver cirrhosis in children. Eighteen children admitted for evaluation of unknown liver disease were examined prospectively and blindly with Doppler ultrasound prior to liver biopsy. Biopsy specimens showed established cirrhosis in 9 of 18, early cirrhosis in 5 of 18, and no cirrhosis in 4 of 18 children. Doppler studies were also performed on 20 control subjects. The portal vein velocity was decreased (p < 0.0005) and the arterio-portal velocity ratio was increased (p < 0.0005) in the established cirrhosis cohort relative to the controls. For the criteria of the established cirrhosis cohort, the sensitivities of the loss of the reverse flow component in the hepatic veins, the arterio-portal velocity ratio being greater than 3.0, the portal vein velocity being less than 20 cm/s, and the existence of focal flow acceleration in the hepatic veins were 100%, 78%, 67%, and 44%, respectively. The specificity of all of these criteria was 100%. The indicators were not useful in the diagnosis of early cirrhosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)287-295
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Clinical Ultrasound
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 26 1996


  • Children
  • Doppler ultrasonography
  • Hepatic veins
  • Liver cirrhosis
  • Portal veins

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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