Noncirrhotic intrahepatic portal hypertension

Semin Liver Dis. 1986 Nov;6(4):332-40. doi: 10.1055/s-2008-1040615.


Portal hypertension, widely recognized as a complication of cirrhosis, may also develop as an intrahepatic consequence of numerous hepatic disorders in the absence of cirrhosis. When gastrointestinal bleeding occurs in such cases, ruptured esophageal varices must be considered. Among chronic liver diseases, some, such as schistosomiasis, are commonly associated with portal hypertension and its complications. In others, including tuberculosis, amyloidosis, and polycystic disease, well-documented portal hypertension has been reported in only a small minority of cases. Nevertheless, because of the ever-present possibility of variceal hemorrhage whenever portal hypertension occurs, clinicians should be aware of these disorders. Acute conditions associated with noncirrhotic intrahepatic portal hypertension include acute (and particularly fulminant) viral or drug-induced hepatitis, acute alcoholic hepatitis, acute veno-occlusive disease, and acute fatty liver of pregnancy. Portal hypertension may be reversible following recovery in these settings. Particular attention is called to the increasing frequency of acute veno-occlusive disease on bone marrow transplant units, presumably as a complication of high-dose chemo- and radiotherapy.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Child
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hypertension, Portal / etiology*
  • Liver Diseases / complications*
  • Pregnancy