Imaging

Hemochromatosis

Preliminary Diagnosis: Hemochromatosis

I. What imaging technique is first-line for this diagnosis

  • Non-enhanced MR imaging with T2WI and T2* GRE sequences

II. Describe the advantages and disadvantages of this technique for diagnosis of hemochromatosis.

Advantages

  • MR Imaging with T2WI and T2* GRE sequences can provide best estimation of hepatic iron concentration

  • No ionizing radiation

Disadvantages

  • MR imaging is costly

  • Time intensive

  • Limited by patient cooperation and motion artifact

III. What are the contraindications for the first-line imaging technique?

  • Patients with certain implanted devices or foreign ferromagnetic devices are contraindicated for MR imaging.

IV. What alternative imaging techniques are available?

  • Non-enhanced computed tomography

V. Describe the advantages and disadvantages of the alternative techniques for diagnosis of hemochromatosis.

Non-enhanced computed tomography

Advantages

  • Fast, relatively inexpensive in comparison to MR imaging

Disadvantages

  • Ionizing radiation exposure

  • Not as accurate in quantifying liver iron deposition

  • Findings of hemochromatosis on CT included increased liver density; other conditions, such as amiodarone deposition, gold therapy, and certain glycogen storage diseases, can also cause increased liver density.

VI. What are the contraindications for the alternative imaging techniques?

  • None

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