One hundred patients underwent transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt (TIPS) creation for variceal bleeding (n = 94), intractable ascites (n = 3), hepatorenal syndrome (n = 2), and preoperative portal decompression (n = 1). Shunts were completed in 96 patients. Portal vein pressure was reduced from 34.5 mm Hg +/- 7.6 (standard deviation) to 24.5 mm Hg +/- 6.2; the residual portal vein-hepatic vein gradient was 10.4 mm Hg +/- 0.9. Acute variceal bleeding was controlled in 29 of 30 patients. Of the 96 patients who underwent successful TIPS creation, 26 have died and 22 have undergone liver transplantation; the remaining 48 patients have survived an average of 7.6 months. Variceal bleeding recurred in 10 patients. Fifteen patients developed shunt stenosis (n = 6) or occlusion (n = 9). Patency was reestablished in eight of the nine occluded shunts. Seventeen patients developed new or worsened encephalopathy. The authors conclude that TIPS creation is an effective and reliable means of lowering portal pressure and controlling variceal bleeding, particularly in patients with acute variceal bleeding unresponsive to sclerotherapy and patients with chronic variceal bleeding before liver transplantation.