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Radiology. 1994 Apr;191(1):183-7.

Intestinal varices: treatment with the transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt.

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  • 1Department of Radiology, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia 19104.



To perform a retrospective evaluation of transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt (TIPS) placement for treatment of intestinal varices.


TIPS were placed in nine patients (six women and three men, aged 36-85 years [mean, 64 years]) with small- (n = 6) and large- (n = 3) intestinal varices. Six patients were actively bleeding at the time of shunt placement. One patient with colon cancer underwent prophylactic TIPS placement for variceal decompression before colectomy.


The mean preprocedure portosystemic gradient of 26.8 mm Hg +/- 5.1 was reduced to 8.8 mm Hg +/- 2.9. Bleeding was controlled in all but one case, in which supplemental variceal embolization was required. Two patients died within 5 days of TIPS placement of preexisting multisystem failure. Three patients died of unrelated causes at 2, 6, and 7 months. The remaining patients were alive an average of 15 months after TIPS placement. There was no recurrent bleeding in any case.


TIPS placement is an effective method of decompressing intestinal varices.

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