How to Treat Portal Hypertension And Cirrhosis?
- December 18, 2023
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What is Portal Hypertension and Cirrhosis?
Portal hypertension is a medical condition characterized by increased pressure in the portal vein, which carries blood from the digestive organs to the liver. It often occurs as a complication of liver cirrhosis, a progressive scarring of the liver tissue due to chronic liver disease. Portal hypertension and cirrhosis are closely linked because cirrhosis is a leading cause of portal hypertension.
Why is Portal Hypertension and Cirrhosis a Concern?
- Impaired Blood Flow: The elevated pressure in the portal vein causes blood to back up into other blood vessels in the digestive system, leading to various complications.
- Risk of Bleeding: Portal hypertension can lead to the formation of varices, which are swollen blood vessels in the esophagus and stomach. These varices are at risk of rupturing and causing life-threatening bleeding.
- Ascites: High portal pressure can result in the accumulation of fluid in the abdominal cavity, a condition known as ascites, which can lead to abdominal discomfort and respiratory problems.
- Hepatic Encephalopathy: Cirrhosis and portal hypertension can affect brain function, leading to symptoms such as confusion, forgetfulness, and even coma.