Exploring changing attitudes to non-invasive liver fibrosis tests in secondary care pathways: comparison of two national surveys

Kushala W. M. Abeysekera (Lead / Corresponding author), Ankur Srivastava, Ian Rowe, Helen Jarvis, Stephen D. Ryder, Andrew Yeoman, John F. Dillon, William Rosenberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
15 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Introduction: The increasing availability of non-invasive tests (NITs) has created the opportunity to explore their use in improving risk stratification of advanced liver disease. The study aimed to determine the attitudes and practices among UK secondary care specialists, focusing primarily on attitudes to fibrosis assessment and the use of NITs. 

Methods: Two web-based surveys were circulated, first between 2014 and 2015 (survey 1), and again in 2021 (survey 2). The surveys were promoted via the British Society of Gastroenterology, the British Association for the Study of the Liver and using Twitter. 

Results: In survey 1, 215 healthcare professionals (HCPs) completed the online survey. 112 HCPs completed survey 2. 71 acute UK trusts were represented in survey 1 compared with 60 trusts in survey 2. Between the two surveys, the proportion of HCPs performing fibrosis assessment in all or nearly all cases rose from 45.1% to 74.1% (χ2=25.01; p<0.0001). 46.5% (n=33/71) respondents in acute services reported the use of NITs in clinical pathways in survey 1, rising to 70.0% (n=42/60) in survey 2 (χ2=7.35; p=0.007). Availability of tests has increased but is not universal. The proportion reporting availability as a barrier to uptake fell from 57.2% of responses in survey 1 to 38.4% in 2021 χ2=11.01; p=0.0009). 

Conclusion: Between 2014 and 2021, the role of NITs in fibrosis assessment has risen substantially, as has the proportion of clinicians using NITs in clinical pathways to assess risk of liver disease. Poor access to NITs remains the predominant barrier.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)483-490
Number of pages8
JournalFrontline Gastroenterology
Volume14
Issue number6
Early online date15 Jun 2023
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2023

Keywords

  • Cirrhosis
  • Clinical decision making
  • Fibrosis
  • Primary care

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hepatology
  • Gastroenterology

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