ARCHIVES OF THE BALKAN MEDICAL UNION

Upper gastrointestinal bleeding in liver cirrhosis patients

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Upper gastrointestinal bleeding represents a serious complication in patients with liver cirrhosis, with a significant mortality that has remained practically unaffected over the past 20 years regardless of the new methods of treatment. Portal hypertension and consequently, esophageal varices, gastric varices and portal gastropathy, are the main etiology of hemorrhage in patients with liver cirrhosis. Besides these specific causes, upper gastrointestinal bleeding in cirrhotic patients may be determined by nonvariceal lesions, independently of the presence of portal hypertension such as gastric antral vascular ectasia (GAVE) or peptic ulcer. Regardless of the etiology, management of upper gastrointestinal bleeding in patients with liver cirrhosis comprised correct measures of hemodynamic resuscitation and prevention of cirrhosis complications.
Medical, endoscopic and even more invasive therapies are available for the treatment of upper gastrointestinal bleeding on purpose to decrease mortality and to improve the outcome of liver cirrhosis patients.

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