Acute on Chronic Liver Failure: Definition and Implications

Clin Liver Dis. 2020 Aug;24(3):521-534. doi: 10.1016/j.cld.2020.04.004. Epub 2020 May 26.


Acute on chronic liver failure (ACLF) is an inflammation-based disorder that occurs in patients with underlying liver disease and is characterized by hepatic and extrahepatic organ failure. Morbidity and mortality are high in patients with ACLF, and therefore prevention and early identification are critical to improve outcome. The purpose of this article is to define ACLF, describe ways to identify the expected outcome of ACLF after development, and illustrate interventions to prevent it and when it is not preventable reduce associated morbidity and mortality.

Keywords: Acute on chronic liver failure; Cirrhosis; Dysbiosis; Liver transplant; Organ failure.

Publication types

  • Review