Ultrasonography is a useful procedure in evaluation of spleen size in different clinical conditions. In this study, we used it to evaluate spleen size in patients with various heptologic, hematologic and autoimmune diseases. To express spleen size, a spleen index (SI), the product of the transverse diameter and its perpendiculr diameter measured on the maximum-sectional image of the spleen, was used. Splenomegaly was present in high percentages of patients with liver, blood, collagen or autoimmune diseases, even though a majority of these spleens were not large enough to palpate. By grading the SI, characteristic distributions of SI were obtained for patients with different types of diseases. Obtaining and grading the SI by the use of ultrasound appears to be a significant supplemental aid for evaluating spleen size, especially in patients whose spleen are not palpable.
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