The authors studied ten patients with primary biliary cirrhosis using planar and single photon emmission computed tomography (SPECT); results were compared with those from 13 healthy subjects. Patients with primary biliary cirrhosis had six- to tenfold prolongation of mean half-life (t 1/2 ) hepatic excretion of technetium-99m iminodiacetic acid (IDA) compared with meant t 1/2 excretion in healthy subjects. All patients with primary biliary cirrhosis had diffuse, uniform hepatic isotope retention and normal major bile ducts on planar and SPECT scans. The gallbladder was seen within 60 minutes in nine of nine patients who had intact gallbladders. The mean gallbladder volume was normal, but gallbladder ejection fractions and ejection rates were reduced in patients with primary biliary cirrhosis compared with those of healthy subjects. In contrast with previous studies of patients with sclerosing cholangitis and common bile duct obstruction, patients with primary biliary cirrhosis had different findings on scintiscans. In the early evaluation of patients with cholestasis, Tc-99m IDA hepatobiliary scintigraphy may be useful in the selection of the most appropriate invasive diagnostic test to enable a definitive diagnosis.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging