Inferior mesocaval shunt for bleeding anorectal varices and portal vein thrombosis

S. Montemurro, F. M. Polignano, C. Caliandro, A. Rucci, E. Ruggieri, V. Sciscio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Intractable bleeding from anorectal varices is a serious and often misdiagnosed complication of portal hypertension and no agreement has been reached on which could be the optimal diagnostic and therapeutic strategy. Indeed, fatal outcome has been often reported resulting from delayed diagnosis and improper treatment. The case of a 67-year-old gentleman with life-threatening bleeding from anorectal varices who successfully underwent inferior mesocaval shunt is reported, and surgical technique for establishing a shunt between the inferior mesenteric vein and inferior vena cava is described. A review of other therapeutic options is presented and results are discussed and compared to those obtained with this novel form of treatment. In our experience, immediate control of recurrent bleeding from anorectal varices was obtained with inferior mesocaval shunt. Technical ease, promptness of action and effectiveness, low procedure-related morbidity are the main features of the shunt. With the introduction of new promising second-line treatment modalities to primary and metastatic liver tumors, like percutaneous radiofrequency thermal ablation, and improvement in outcome of portal vein thrombosis, the inferior mesocaval shunt may represent a sound alternative for patients who are ineligible for transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt or presenting with clotted shunt.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)980-983
Number of pages4
Issue number40
Publication statusPublished - 2001


  • Anorectal varices
  • Inferior mesocaval shunt
  • Portal hypertension
  • Portal thrombosis
  • Portosystemic shunt
  • Variceal bleeding

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology


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