There are veins which carry blood from the various digestive organs to the liver. When there is an obstruction in the free flow of blood in the liver, it increases the pressure and is known as portal hypertension. This increased blood pressure stresses the blood vessels in the esophagus, stomach, and other digestive organs and results in internal bleeding.
What causes portal hypertension?
Cirrhosis is the most common cause of portal hypertension. The cirrhosis could be a result of excessive consumption of alcohol, chronic hepatitis, or thrombosis in the liver vessels. Blood clots in the portal vein are schistosomiasis ( a parasitic infection) are some other causes of portal hypertension. It is also important to know that in some cases, the causes of this condition remain unknown.
What are the symptoms?
Although, the symptoms of portal hypertension may not be very evident until you identify that there is some damage in the liver. the chances of developing a portal hypertension are increased if you suffer from a liver disease.
How can it be managed?
Once diagnosed, treatment of portal hypertension is at two levels.
At the first level, dietary and lifestyle changes and medical treatment should suffice.
If this first line does not work, then the next level of interventional therapy is initiated.
So, while portal hypertension definitely is a serious medical condition, there are different levels of treatment. The important thing is to alert yourself once any symptoms set in. Early intervention always ensures minimal intervention and good prognosis.
In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!