PURPOSE: To study the efficacy of percutaneous treatment for portal vein thrombosis (PVT). MATERIALS AND METHODS: Of 20 patients who were evaluated for symptomatic portal occlusion, 14 were successfully treated with use of percutaneous techniques. In patients with noncavernomatous PVT (n = 15), the initial treatment was to increase portal output by creating a transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt (TIPS), which was successful in 12 cases. Methods to decrease arterial input to the portal system (hepatosplenic arterial embolization) were used as primary therapy in two patients and in an additional two patients with continued symptoms, despite a functioning TIPS. RESULTS: All TIPS survivors had patent shunts, although patients with complete PVT required more frequent revisions compared to patients with nonocclusive PVT. Hepatosplenic arterial embolization controlled symptoms in the four patients who were treated, but both patients with patent TIPS died of liver failure after embolization. Of the 14 patients treated, eight died at a mean of 6.2 months (six from hepatoma). CONCLUSION: TIPS is effective in patients with noncavernomatous PVT, although patients with complete thrombosis experience recurrent shunt occlusions and also may develop hepatoma. If TIPS fails, or if symptoms recur, hepatosplenic arterial embolization may be an option.
- Liver, cirrhosis
- Liver, interventional procedure
- Portal vein, thrombosis
- Shunts, portosystemic
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine