The Evaluation of Portal Hypertension Using Quantitative Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRQuee study)

1st April 2013 - ongoing

Status: In Recruitment

Specialism: Liver.

Team: Professor Guruprasad AithalDr Neil GuhaDr Susan FrancisEleanor CoxChris Bradley.

Funded by NIHR (2014 to 2018)

Liver scarring is caused by a range of insults including alcohol, diabetes, viruses, iron, autoimmune and genetic conditions. Over a period of years, in certain individuals, this can lead to severe scarring of the liver, which is called cirrhosis. In the early stages of cirrhosis symptoms may not be present and routine blood tests can often be normal. This research study aims to find better tests that assess how the liver is working, predicting complications such as dilated veins in the gullet (varices) and the development of future complications (e.g. fluid in the abdomen, bleeding and confusion). The only test we have to predict prognosis and treatment success in someone with cirrhosis is by measuring the portal pressure (the pressure in the veins in and around the liver). Currently the only existing test to measure portal pressure is to pass a pressure sensor through a vein in the neck, down into the liver. This is called the hepatic venous pressure gradient (HVPG) measurement. This is a specialist test that is not widely available. MRI is an established way of taking pictures of the body. It is painless, non-invasive, does not use any radiation, and is commonly used to get detailed pictures of the brain, heart or liver. In Nottingham, we hope to show that MRI scans can measure the pressure as accurately as HVPG. Anyone who has a pressure measurement as part of their routine care will be invited to take part in our study.

Tests Involved

Patients will be invited to the NIHR Nottingham Digestive Diseases Biomedical Research Unit for one study visit. At this visit you will have:

  • Research and routine blood tests
  • Fibroscan – a scan similar to ultrasound measuring how stiff a person’s liver is
  • MRI scan

If you are interested in taking part or want to find out more, please feel free to contact us with any questions or to request further information:

Suzanne Henry (Research Nurse)

Tel: 0115 924 9924 Ext 70614

Photo Name Bio
guruprasad-aithal Professor Guruprasad Aithal Biography Professor Guruprasad P. Aithal is the Professor of Hepatology and the Head of the Division for the Nottingham Digestive Diseases Centre and Deputy Director of Nottingham Molecular Pathology Node. Professor Aithal is the GI & Liver Disorder…
neil-guha Dr Neil Guha Dr Neil Guha is a Clinical Associate Professor in Hepatology at the University of Nottingham. He trained at Guy's and St. Thomas's hospitals and began his postgraduate career in hepatology at St. Mary's Hospital, London. His doctoral thesis, awarded by…
Dr Susan Francis My research has centred on developing Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) methods for biomedical applications, over the last ~ 15 years in this field. This has included the application and development of functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI)…
Eleanor Cox
Chris Bradley