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Spontaneous hepatic rupture during pregnancy in a patient with peliosis hepatis

Stefania Cimbanassi, Paolo Aseni, Anna Mariani, Fabrizio Sammartano, Edgardo Bonacina, Osvaldo Chiara


Spontaneous hepatic rupture (SHR) during pregnancy is a rare but well known complication and it usually occurs alongside eclampsia or HELLP syndrome. SHR in uncomplicated pregnancy is extremely rare and can be associated to different undiagnosed pathological conditions. We report the case of a nulliparous woman, 27 weeks pregnant, with a peliosis hepatis, previously unknown, who was admitted to our unit due to SHR and massive hemoperitoneum. The conception was obtained by embryo transfer after multiple attempts of hormone-supported cycles using estrogens and progesterone. After emergency laparotomy the patient was submitted to deliver of the dead foetus and damage control of the hepatic bleeding source. At relaparotomy a right posterior sectionectomy (segments VI and VII) and segmentectomy of segment V were performed. The patient was discharged in good physical conditions after 18 days from admission. If hepatic rupture is suspected in a pregnant patient a collaborative multidisciplinary approach is mandatory. The cornerstones of medical and surgical management are highlighted. At the best of our knowledge this is the first case of SHR in a pregnant woman with peliosis hepatis. A possible correlation of an increased risk for SHR in a pregnant patient who was submitted to several attempts for embryo transfer is discussed. The relevant scientific literature of the possible causative role of the estrogen therapy in inducing politic liver damage is also reviewed.

Key words. Liver disease., Liver in pregnancy., Haemoperitoneum., Haematoma., Peliosis hepatis.

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The Official Journal of the Mexican Association of Hepatology, the Latin-American Association for the Study of the Liver and the Canadian Association for the Study of the Liver

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