Portosystemic shunts for extrahepatic portal hypertension in children.Surg Gynecol Obstet. 1981 Jul; 153(1):53-6.SG
Twenty-three children with prehepatic portal hypertension and hemorrhage due to ruptured esophagogastric varices had portosystemic shunts. Their ages ranged from two years and seven months to 15 years. Eleven were less than eight years of age. Twenty patients had portal vein cavernomatosis and three patients had double portal veins. In 21 patients, a mesocaval type of shunt was done. A splenorenal shunt was performed in two. There was no surgical mortality. Two shunts occluded, both in rather young infants--two years and seven months and three years of age. In all the others, there was no further bleeding, and the shunts remained patent, as shown by abdominal angiograms. Neuropsychiatric disorders, probably due to hepatic encephalopathy, occurred in only one patient. On the basis of this favorable experience, we believe that an elective portosystemic shunt should, in general, be performed upon children with prehepatic portal hypertension after one major variceal hemorrhage. We favor a mesocaval type of shunt in these children because of the larger diameter of the vessels involved in the anastomosis and because it preserves the spleen, maintaining defense against subsequent infection.