From the November 2015 issue of HealthCare Business News magazine
HCB News: Do you use SWE only for assessing fibrosis in new patients, or are there other points in time that it’s used?
SWE is also useful when you’re monitoring how the liver is doing under treatment — or how the disease has progressed without treatment. ShearWave elastography makes these follow-up visits short and sweet; we can get the information we need while avoiding pain and discomfort for the patient.
HCB News: How has this technology affected your practice?
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It’s improved throughput. In most cases you can do an exam while the patient’s there in the office, meaning it just depends on how busy you are and how much time they have. So they come in, they can get a consult, they get their elastography, and before they leave they have the entire picture, as opposed to having to wait for a biopsy and interpret the results and all that sort of stuff. It also eliminates an additional copay for them. That is worlds apart from having to schedule and perform an invasive procedure like a biopsy, then wait for the results.
HCB News: Are there any broader implications of this dovetailing of treatment options and specific technology?
Well, without wasting time on unnecessary and painful biopsies, we can improve clinical throughput and direct resources to those who really need them.
Dr. James Trotter is the Director of Hepatology at Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas.Back to HCB News