Transit time ultrasound perivascular flow probe technology is superior to MR imaging on hepatic blood flow measurement in a porcine model

Mohamed Bekheit, Chloe Audebert, Petru Bucur, Hans Adriaensen, Emilie Bled, Mylène Wartenberg, Irene Vignon-Clementel, Eric Vibert* (Corresponding Author)

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Background: The hepatic hemodynamics is an essential parameter in surgical planning as well as in various disease processes. The transit time ultrasound (TTUS) perivascular flow probe technology is widely used in clinical practice to evaluate the hepatic inflow, yet invasive. The phase-contrast-MRI (PC-MRI) is not invasive and potentially applicable in assessing the hepatic blood flow. In the present study, we compared the hepatic inflow rates using the PC-MRI and the TTUS probe, and evaluated their predictive value of post-hepatectomy adverse events. Methods: Eighteen large white pigs were anaesthetized for PC-MRI and approximately 75% hepatic resection was performed under a unified protocol. The blood flow was measured in the hepatic artery (Qha), the portal vein (Qpv), and the aorta above the celiac trunk (Qca) using PC-MRI, and was compared to the TTUS probe. The Bland-Altman method was conducted and a partial least squares regression (PLS) model was implemented. Results: The mean Qpv measured in PC-MRI was 0.55 ± 0.12 L/min, and in the TTUS probe was 0.74 ± 0.17 L/min. Qca was 1.40 ± 0.47 L/min in the PC-MRI and 2.00 ± 0.60 L/min in the TTUS probe. Qha was 0.17 ± 0.10 L/min in the PC-MRI, and 0.13 ± 0.06 L/min in the TTUS probe. The Bland-Altman method revealed that the estimated bias of Qca in the PC-MRI was 32% (95% CI: −49% to 15%); Qha 17% (95% CI: −15% to 51%); and Qpv 40% (95% CI: −62% to 18%). The TTUS probe had a higher weight in predicting adverse outcomes after 75% resection compared to the PC-MRI (β= 0.35 and 0.43 vs β = 0.22 and 0.07, for tissue changes and premature death, respectively). Conclusions: There is a tendency of the PC-MRI to underestimate the flow measured by the TTUS probes. The TTUS probe measures are more predictive of relevant post-hepatectomy outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)538-545
Number of pages8
JournalHepatobiliary and Pancreatic Diseases International
Issue number6
Early online date8 Aug 2018
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2018

Bibliographical note

This study was supported mainly by the “Agence de la Biomedecine” through its program of Research (AOR 2009). BM, AC, BP, WM, VCI and VE acknowledged funding of project ANR-13-TECS-0006 by the Agence Nationale de la Recherche.


  • Hepatic blood flow
  • Liver surgery
  • Phase contrast MRI
  • Porcine model
  • Transit time ultrasound probe


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