Short-term portal hemodynamic effects of endoscopic embolization for esophageal varices.Dig Surg. 2000; 17(5):454-8.DS
Endoscopic embolization (EE) is a specialized treatment that obliterates esophageal varices along with their associated blood supply. The purpose of this study was to investigate the short-term effects of EE for esophageal varices on portal hemodynamics and liver function.
Thirty patients with esophageal varices were included in this study. The portal blood flow was measured by an ultrasonic duplex Doppler system before and after EE. EE was performed by freehand intravariceal injection of 5% ethanolamine oleate with iopamidol with the aid of a balloon attached to the tip of an endoscope under fluoroscopy.
For the blood supply system, endoscopic varicography at the time of EE was able to show the vessels of the cardiac branch of the left gastric vein in 93% of the cases, the cardiac venous plexus in 90%, the trunk of the left gastric vein in 27%, the lesser curvature branch of the left gastric vein in 10%, the fundic branch of the short gastric vein in 13%, and the posterior gastric vein in 13%. For the blood drainage system, endoscopic varicography was able to show the paraesophageal vein in 39% of the cases, the inferior phrenic vein in 17%, and the mediastinal vein in 13%. No clotting was detected after EE in the intra- and extraportal veins in any of the cases. The flow velocities in the main portal vein before and after EE were 14.2+/-3.2 and 15.5+/-3.5 cm/s, respectively, showing no significant change. The cross-sectional area of the portal vein before and after EE was 0.96+/-0.21 and 1.04+/-0.23 cm(2), and the flow volume of the portal vein was 817+/-288 and 930+/-189 ml/min, both also showing no significant change. The blood laboratory parameters showed no significant change after EE.
We conclude that neither portal blood flow nor liver function were damaged by EE, although both the varices and their associated blood supply were obliterated.