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Ir Med J. 1977 Oct 21;70(15):455-6.

Fatal outcome of an hepatic adenoma following short term oral contraceptive use.



In this case report, it is emphasized that duration of exposure to an oral contraceptive is not of prime importance. The patient was a 30-year-old woman complaining of sudden onset of severe epigastric pain which radiated to the right upper abdomen and the right shoulder. She had been using anovulatory pills for 18 months. A mass was felt in the right upper abdomen. The white cell count was 21,000/cu mm. Acute cholecystitis was the original diagnosis. In the next 4 days the bilirubin rose to 2.9 mg% and the alkaline phosphatase to 23.1 KA units. At laparotomy the gallbladder was found to be normal. Hepatomegaly was noted. A liver biopsy was taken. Subsequently a liver scan showed a large defect in the right lobe of the liver. Selective angiography of the right hepatic artery showed a large vascular mass. The diagnosis was changed to hepatic adenoma with secondary hemorrhage. Before further surgery the patient suffered a cardiorespiratory arrest and died. At autopsy a hepatic adenoma was found in the right lobe. A large embolus was found blocking the pulmonary arteries. The embolus was considered the cause of the sudden death.

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