Ultrasonographic detection of portal branches and hepatic vein gas associated with mesenteric artery occlusion: a new finding correlated with patient prognosis?

G. Torzilli, S. Cattaneo, V. Lumachi, P. Leoni, P. Stefanini, P. Gnocchi, N. Olivari

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The diagnosis of bowel infarction is still a challenge. In some cases, portal venous gas is an associated feature and in these patients, the prognosis is very poor. We report on our experience with two consecutive cases in which ultrasonography showed gas in the portal venous branches, and also in the hepatic veins in one of them. At laparotomy, advanced bowel necrosis was found, and both patients died within 24 hours. Other cases of portal venous gas associated with bowel infarction have been reported, but this is the first report of gas also being found in the hepatic veins. There may be a relationship between the amount of gas in the intrahepatic veins and the stage of bowel ischemia. Confirmation of this might improve the selection of patients and eliminate unnecessary procedures.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)295-298
Number of pages4
JournalChirurgia Italiana
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - May 2000


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery

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