New state-of-the-art equipment that gives liver patients instant results has been introduced at a Black Country hospital.

The £70,000 machine which measures the elasticity of liver tissues, has been installed at Sandwell Hospital, in West Bromwich.

Patients in City Hospital, Winson Green, will also be referred. The machine avoids the need for a biopsy which can be dangerous as well as uncomfortable.

Consultant, Dr Saket Singhal, explained that the new machine, which is used to measure the health of the liver, would be of benefit to patients with many types of liver disease.

They would include those with viral hepatitis, fatty liver disease and liver disease due to alcohol.

He added: “The scanner works by projecting painless waves through the liver tissue which then give us a reading of how elastic the tissue is.”

Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust was able to buy the machine through donations from Sandwell Primary Care Trust (PCT) and the Hospital’s League of Friends, and local charity Upper GI Blues.