Ultrasound elastography

Last revised by Ramon Olushola Wahab on 23 Sep 2023

Ultrasound elastography, also called as sono-elastography, is a modern evolutionary method of sonographic imaging. Techniques include shear wave elastography (also known as transient elastography) and strain elastography (also known as static or compression elastography). These techniques utilize sound waves for assessing the mechanical properties of tissues such as stiffness and elasticity in response to mechanical pressure on tissue. They are used for detecting different pathologies in tissues by using the differences of their aforesaid mechanical properties.

Ultrasound elastography is increasingly used as a non-invasive method to assess the degree of liver fibrosis in chronic liver disease and grade it accordingly because of the prognostic value 1.


Tissue stiffness is calculated using a physical property of tissue called Young's modulus or modulus of elasticity. Young's modulus is defined as the ratio of stress (the force placed on a cross-sectional area of a certain material) to strain (i.e. deformation; in this case, tissue deformation). The unit of Young's modulus is Pa(Pascal) or S.I unit of N/m2. Sonographic elastography value is usually in kPa in most clinical settings.


Sonographic elastography has multiple clinical applications and is used 2

  • to assess the degree of hepatic fibrosis and characterization of liver lesions

  • to assess diffuse renal parenchymal changes and characterization of renal lesions

  • in breast mass diagnosis

  • in prostate cancer detection 

  • in thyroid lesion characterization 

  • in tendon imaging 

ADVERTISEMENT: Supporters see fewer/no ads

Updating… Please wait.

 Unable to process the form. Check for errors and try again.

 Thank you for updating your details.