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Boletín médico del Hospital Infantil de México

versión impresa ISSN 1665-1146


ACOSTA-JIMENEZ, Elsa; VARELA-FASCINETTO, Gustavo  y  VALENCIA-MAYORAL, Pedro. Portal vein alterations in patients with extrahepatic biliary atresia. Bol. Med. Hosp. Infant. Mex. [online]. 2009, vol.66, n.2, pp.132-140. ISSN 1665-1146.

Introduction. Vascular lesions of the liver are varied and may be observed in different conditions; arterial lesions have been observed in extrahepatic biliary atresia (EBA). To our knowledge, alterations of the portal vein or its main branches have not been described previously. The aim of this article is to inform peculiar portal vein lesions found in a group of patients with EBA. Methods. This is a descriptive, retrospective study of 62 consecutive biopsies of patients with EBA who underwent portoenteral anastomosis over a 10 year period. Vessels from the hepatic hilium were studied with hematoxylin & eosin, Masson's trichrome, elastic fibers, mucicarmine, alcian blue, PAS, coloidal iron, CD20, CD3, CD68, and actin stains. Cellular or fibrous subendothelial proliferation, tunica elastica damage, edema, calcification, thrombosis, and glycosaminoglycan deposits were searched; the extension of damage was graded as mild (less than 25% of circumference), moderate (26 to 50%), or severe (over 50%). Vessels were classified according to their circumference as medium sized (less than 300 microns) and large; when possible the portal vein and/or its larger branches were evaluated. Hepatic explants (n =20) of patients without EBA were used as controls. Demographic data were obtained from clinical charts. Results. Age averaged 3 months; 45 patients were female. In 24 cases, portal vein or its larger branches were present. Vascular alterations were observed in 35 cases: arterial changes in 13, vein lesions in 10, and both types of damage in 12. The main arterial changes found were: elastic rupture (n =19), glycosaminoglycans deposits (n =19), and subendothelial cellular proliferation (n =20); all changes were mild to moderate. On the other hand, glycosaminoglycans deposits (n =7), sub-endothelial fibrous proliferation (n =8), and elastic fibers rupture (n =9) were the main alterations observed in the portal vein or its branches; these changes were mild. Subendothelial cellular proliferation was composed of macrophages, B and T lymphocytes, and myofibroblasts. These alterations were present since early ages and not observed in control subjects. Conclusions. Vascular alterations were commonly observed in EBA. Portal vein changes were present at least in one third of cases studied, and they appear to be part of the process and not an acquired condition. These changes may explain some vascular complications of liver transplantation of patients with EBA as well as support vascular and/or autoimmune theories on EBA origin; likewise, they may provide data for future insights on EBA pathogenesis.

Palabras llave : Biliary atresia; extrahepatic; vascular; lesions; vascular diseases.

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