Transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunts (TIPS) may worsen liver function and decrease survival in some patients. The Child-Pugh classification has several drawbacks when used to determine survival in such patients. The survival of 231 patients at 4 medical centers within the United States who underwent elective TIPS was studied to develop statistical models to (1) predict patient survival and (2) identify those patients whose liver-related mortality post-TIPS would be 3 months or less. Among these elective TIPS patients, 173 had the procedure for prevention of variceal rebleeding and 58 for treatment of refractory ascites. Death related to liver disease occurred in 110 patients, 70 within 3 months. Cox proportional-hazards regression identified serum concentrations of bilirubin and creatinine, international normalized ratio for prothrombin time (INR), and the cause of the underlying liver disease as predictors of survival in patients undergoing elective TIPS, either for prevention of variceal rebleeding or for treatment of refractory ascites. These variables can be used to calculate a risk score (R) for patients undergoing elective TIPS. Patients with R > 1.8 had a median survival of 3 months or less. This model was superior to both the Child-Pugh classification, as well as the Child-Pugh score, in predicting survival. Using logistic regression and the same variables, we also developed a nomogram that indicates which patients survive less than 3 months. Finally, the model was validated among an independent set of 71 patients from the Netherlands. This Mayo TIPS model may predict early death following elective TIPS for either prevention of variceal rebleeding or for treatment of refractory ascites.