Semin Liver Dis 2008; 28(1): 003-025
DOI: 10.1055/s-2008-1040318
© Thieme Medical Publishers

Portal Hypertension and Gastrointestinal Bleeding

Jaime Bosch1 , 2 , Juan G. Abraldes1 , 2 , Annalisa Berzigotti3 , 4 , Juan Carlos Garcia-Pagan1 , 2
  • 1Hepatic Hemodynamic Laboratory, Liver Unit, Institut d'Investigacions Biomediques August Pi i Sunyer (IDIBAPS), University of Barcelona, Spain
  • 2Centro de Investigación Biomédica en Red de Enfermedades Hepáticas y Digestivas (CIBEREHD), University of Barcelona, Spain
  • 3Centre Diagnostic per la Imatge, Hospital Clinic, Barcelona, Spain
  • 4Department of Internal Medicine, Cardioangiology, Hepatology, Policlinico S. Orsola, University of Bologna, Italy
Further Information

Publication History

Publication Date:
22 February 2008 (online)


Variceal bleeding is one of the most serious complications of portal hypertension. The driving force for the development of varices is an increase in portal pressure. As portal hypertension progresses, varices dilate until they finally rupture and bleed. This sequence of events might be prevented by achieving a sufficient decrease in portal pressure or by acting locally at the varices with endoscopic treatments. This article reviews the rationale for the management of portal hypertension and the current recommendations for the prevention and treatment of variceal bleeding.


Professor Jaime Bosch, M.D. , Ph.D. 

Hepatic Hemodynamic Laboratory, Liver Unit, Hospital Clínic, Villarroel 170

08036 Barcelona, Spain