Abdominal Imaging - Original Article

Feasibility of histogram analysis of susceptibility-weighted MRI for staging of liver fibrosis


  • Zhao-Xia Yang
  • He-Yue Liang
  • Xin-Xing Hu
  • Ya-Qin Huang
  • Ying Ding
  • Shan Yang
  • Meng-Su Zeng
  • Sheng-Xiang Rao

Received Date: 01.07.2015 Accepted Date: 10.11.2015 Diagn Interv Radiol 2016;22(4):301-307


We aimed to evaluate whether histogram analysis of susceptibility-weighted imaging (SWI) could quantify liver fibrosis grade in patients with chronic liver disease (CLD).


Fifty-three patients with CLD who underwent multi-echo SWI (TEs of 2.5, 5, and 10 ms) were included. Histogram analysis of SWI images were performed and mean, variance, skewness, kurtosis, and the 1st, 10th, 50th, 90th, and 99th percentiles were derived. Quantitative histogram parameters were compared. For significant parameters, further receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analyses were performed to evaluate the potential diagnostic performance for differentiating liver fibrosis stages.


The number of patients in each pathologic fibrosis grade was 7, 3, 5, 5, and 33 for F0, F1, F2, F3, and F4, respectively. The results of variance (TE: 10 ms), 90th percentile (TE: 10 ms), and 99th percentile (TE: 10 and 5 ms) in F0–F3 group were significantly lower than in F4 group, with areas under the ROC curves (AUCs) of 0.84 for variance and 0.70–0.73 for the 90th and 99th percentiles, respectively. The results of variance (TE: 10 and 5 ms), 99th percentile (TE: 10 ms), and skewness (TE: 2.5 and 5 ms) in F0–F2 group were smaller than those of F3/F4 group, with AUCs of 0.88 and 0.69 for variance (TE: 10 and 5 ms, respectively), 0.68 for 99th percentile (TE: 10 ms), and 0.73 and 0.68 for skewness (TE: 2.5 and 5 ms, respectively).


Magnetic resonance histogram analysis of SWI, particularly the variance, is promising for predicting advanced liver fibrosis and cirrhosis.