Ramphal, Paul S.; Lee, Michael G.; Rose, D. A.; Venugopal, Sivarajan
Author Affiliation, Ana.
Surgery, Radiology, Anaesthesia and Intensive Care
Childhood portal hypertension in Jamaica.
West Indian Medical Journal
Date of Publication
Portal hypertension and bleeding from oesophageal varices in children remain a difficult medical problem. The clinical course and management of children with portal hypertension seen over a 14-year period was reviewed. There were 5 females and 2 males with a mean age of 3.6 years at presentation. Five patients presented with severe upper gastrointestinal bleeding and two with severe hypersplenism. All patients had extra-hepatic portal hypertension. Five patients were treated with endoscopic sclerotherapy, including one who had bleeding five years post-splenectomy. A mean of 9 sclerotherapy sessions was performed in each patient. Complete obliteration of varices was not achieved in any patient and a single rebleeding episode occurred in four. Three children underwent operative management consisting of splenectomy in two and splenectomy and central spleno-renal shunt in one. There was no mortality in either group after a mean follow-up of 4.3 years. Sclerotherapy may not be totally successful in long-term management of childhood portal hypertension. Surgical therapy or a combination of sclerotherapy and surgery may be the best approach.....