Benign nodular hepatocellular lesions caused by abnormal hepatic circulation: etiological analysis and introduction of a new concept

J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2001 Dec;16(12):1319-28. doi: 10.1046/j.1440-1746.2001.02576.x.


Problems in definitive diagnosis and etiology of various benign nodular hepatocellular lesions were evaluated. Of these lesions, focal nodular hyperplasia (FNH), nodular regenerative hyperplasia (NRH), nodular lesions associated with idiopathic portal hypertension (IPH), non-cirrhotic large regenerative nodules (LRN), hepatocellular adenoma (HA)-like hyperplastic nodules, and partial nodular transformation (PNT) have been suggested to be related to abnormal hepatic circulation. However, the following points are considered to need further clarification: (i) is the abnormal circulation caused by thrombosis, vasculitis, or congenital anomaly?; (ii) is thrombosis a cause or a result of congestion?; (iii) are impaired blood vessels primarily the portal veins or arteries?; (iv) how are these disorders related to various syndromes, immunological abnormalities and abnormal blood flow of other organs, which are reported to coexist with these lesions often?; and (v) how should non-typical cases, which differ from typical cases, be interpreted? In addition, a concept that may lead to solving these problems (anomalous portal tract syndrome; a hypothesis that congenital vascular anomaly is the origin of these benign nodular hepatocellular lesions) was introduced.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Focal Nodular Hyperplasia / classification
  • Focal Nodular Hyperplasia / etiology*
  • Hepatic Artery / abnormalities*
  • Hepatic Artery / pathology
  • Humans
  • Hypertension, Portal / complications
  • Liver Circulation
  • Portal Vein / abnormalities*
  • Portal Vein / pathology