NICE has assessed Virtual Touch Quantification (VTq) to help the NHS decide whether to use this product.
VTq is software that can be used to diagnose and monitor liver fibrosis. This is when too much scar tissue collects in the liver, often as a result of hepatitis (inflammation of the liver). If untreated, liver fibrosis can cause serious problems including liver failure.
VTq is installed on a compatible ultrasound machine. During a scan, it uses special imaging analysis to measure the elasticity of liver tissue. Liver fibrosis causes the tissue to become stiff, so by measuring the elasticity a clinician can diagnose the extent of liver fibrosis.
Healthcare teams may want to use VTq in people with chronic hepatitis B or C because it costs less than liver biopsy and a similar test called transient elastography, even if a compatible ultrasound machine needs to be purchased. By avoiding liver biopsies, VTq may also benefit people whose liver fibrosis needs monitoring.
This page was last updated: 23 September 2015