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Hepatol Res. 2005 Aug;32(4):252-5. Epub 2005 Jul 14.

Case report of an arterioportal fistula, presenting with accelerated decompensation and sepsis, twenty-six years after initial liver biopsy.

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The Liver Unit, Southampton University Hospital Trust, Southampton, UK.


We describe the case of a 55-year-old lady who presented with accelerated hepatic decompensation from an arterioportal fistula (APF). There is histological evidence the APF proceeded a percutaneous liver biopsy performed 26 years ago. She had shown no symptoms or signs of liver disease in the intervening period. The clinical presentation initially was that of portal hypertension but evolved into a systemic inflammatory response syndrome associated with renal and liver failure. We describe how the APF was embolised by interventional radiology and how the timing of this decision was a balance between reversing abnormal haemodynamics and trying to avoid instrumentation of a potentially septic environment. This unusual case reflects the relationship between portal hypertension, sepsis and renal failure.

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