Hepatic Steatosis in Morbidly Obese Patients Undergoing Gastric Bypass Surgery: Assessment With Open-System H-1-MR Spectroscopy

Department of Radiology, Academic Medical Center, Meibergdreef 9, Amsterdam 1105 AZ, The Netherlands.
American Journal of Roentgenology (Impact Factor: 2.74). 06/2011; 196(6):W736-42. DOI: 10.2214/AJR.10.5215
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The purpose of this study was to assess, with histopathologic control, the use of open-system 1-T (1)H MR spectroscopy for the evaluation of hepatic steatosis in morbidly obese patients undergoing gastric bypass surgery.
Patients underwent (1)H MR spectroscopy (MRS) for the assessment of steatosis before and 3 months after surgery. Liver biopsy was performed during surgery. Hepatic steatosis was expressed as the ratio of fat peak area to cumulative water and fat peak areas. Histopathologic percentage of steatosis was graded as none (0-5%), mild (5-33%), moderate (33-66%), or severe (> 66%). The accuracy of (1)H-MRS and Spearman correlation coefficient were calculated. Differences between groups were assessed with the Wilcoxon signed rank and Mann-Whitney tests.
The study included 38 patients (median age, 45.5 years; median body mass index, 47.7). Before surgery, median steatosis measured with (1)H-MRS was 5.8%. The accuracy of (1)H-MRS was 89% (32/36), and the (1)H-MRS findings correlated with the histopathologic assessment of steatosis (r = 0.85, p < 0.001). With (1)H-MRS, no steatosis was discriminated from mild steatosis (p = 0.011), mild was discriminated from moderate steatosis (p < 0.001), and moderate was discriminated from severe steatosis (p = 0.021). Three months after surgery, steatosis had decreased to 3.1% (p < 0.001). The prevalence of hepatic steatosis measured with (1)H-MRS decreased from 53% to 32%.
In the care of morbidly obese patients undergoing assessment of hepatic steatosis and changes in steatosis after gastric bypass surgery, (1)H-MRS with an open 1-T MRI system is feasible. Measurements of hepatic fat with (1)H-MRS are accurate and correlate with clinical and histopathologic results.

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