Ultrasound examination in detection and characterization of colorectal liver metastases



The diagnosis and detection of colorectal liver metastases (CRLMs) relies first and totally on imaging studies. Trans abdominal ultrasound (US) is the most cost-effective and readily available modality to screen the liver. Contrast-enhanced ultrasound (CEUS) has shown high performance comparable to contrast-enhanced computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging in detection and characterization of CRLMs. Intraoperative ultrasonography (IOUS) is the golden standard for detection of CRLMs and frequently used for intraoperative decision making. This review illustrates the findings on ultrasonic examinations (including US, CEUS and IOUS) of CRLMs with an emphasis on unique capability and appropriate indications of ultrasonic examinations in the detection and characterization of CRLMs. We aim to highlight the advan­tages of ultrasonic examinations, as well as underscoring potential pitfalls and limitations.


Ultrasound; Contrast enhanced ultrasound; Colorectal liver metastasis; Diagnosis; Detection

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