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J Hepatol. 2003 Jun;38(6):751-4.

TIPS for acute and chronic Budd-Chiari syndrome: a single-centre experience.

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Scuola di Specializzazione in Gastroenterologia ed Endoscopia Digestiva, Reparto di Medicina, Ospedale V. Cervello, Universita' di Palermo, Via Trabucco 180, 90144, Palermo, Italy.



Transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt (TIPS) is a technically challenging but feasible treatment for Budd-Chiari syndrome (BCS). However, information about the outcome, particularly in patients with liver failure, is scarce. We report our experience of TIPS for BCS.


Fifteen patients with BCS underwent TIPS. Eight had hepatic failure and seven underwent TIPS for BCS uncontrolled by medical treatment.


Fourteen out of 15 had successful TIPS placement. Out of the eight hepatic failure patients, four died soon after TIPS: one liver rupture, one portal vein rupture, one liver failure and one pulmonary oedema. Another patient had a significant intrahepatic haematoma, which resolved with conservative management. TIPS was successfully placed in all of the seven patients with chronic BCS, in whom there was an average follow-up of 20 months. Ascites resolved and liver function improved in all. One patient died after 18 months from the original hepatic metastatic disease. Four patients have had evidence of TIPS dysfunction requiring three balloon dilatations and one restenting. No patient has required liver transplantation.


TIPS should be the first line treatment for BCS uncontrolled by medical therapy. However, mortality in BCS with hepatic failure is high and liver transplantation could be a better option.

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