• Liver biopsy
There are many causes of liver disease and it’s sometimes difficult to diagnose a condition based on symptoms and simple blood tests such as LFTs. A liver biopsy may be needed to diagnose the cause of your liver disease and identify how advanced it has become.
A liver biopsy is a process where a tiny piece of the liver is taken for study. A fine hollow needle is passed through the skin into the liver and a small sample is withdrawn with the needle.
The test is usually done under local anaesthetic. As it can be uncomfortable and there’s a small risk of internal bleeding or bile leakage, a stay in hospital of at least six to eight hours is required. You may return home the same day, but sometimes an overnight stay at the hospital is required.
The tissue sample is examined under a microscope to look for information on the stage and cause of your liver damage.