Screening for liver fibrosis: lessons from colorectal and lung cancer screening

M Thiele, PS Kamath, I Graupera, A Castells, HJ de Koning, M Serra-Burriel, F Lammert, P Gines*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleAcademicpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Many countries have incorporated population screening programmes for cancer, such as colorectal and lung cancer, into their health-care systems. Cirrhosis is more prevalent than colorectal cancer and has a comparable age-standardized mortality rate to lung cancer. Despite this fact, there are no screening programmes in place for early detection of liver fibrosis, the precursor of cirrhosis. In this Perspective, we use insights from colorectal and lung cancer screening to explore the benefits, challenges, implementation strategies and pathways for future liver fibrosis screening initiatives. Several non-invasive methods and referral pathways for early identification of liver fibrosis exist, but in addition to accurate detection, screening programmes must also be cost-effective and demonstrate benefit through a reduction in liver-related mortality. Randomized controlled trials are needed to confirm this. Future randomized screening trials should evaluate not only the screening tests, but also interventions used to halt disease progression in individuals identified through screening.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)517-527
Number of pages11
JournalNature Reviews Gastroenterology and Hepatology
Issue number7
Early online date13 Mar 2024
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 13 Mar 2024

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© Springer Nature Limited 2024.


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