Balloon-occluded retrograde transvenous obliteration for intractable gastric variceal bleeding.


Balloon-occluded retrograde transvenous obliteration (BRTO) is an interventional radiologic technique that obliterates gastric varices (GV) from draining veins under balloon occlusion. A 54-year-old man presented with Stage IV hepatocellular carcinoma and tumor thrombi in main portal vein. Intractable GV bleeding had no response to repeated endoscopic sclerotherapy and pharmacotherapy well. Additionally, his medical condition could not allow transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt or surgical portal decompression. Due to spontaneous gastrorenal shunt proved with abdominal computed tomography, we conducted BRTO to prevent further bleeding. The immediate postprocedural venogram showed total occlusion of the gastrorenal shunt and no visualization of the GV. Follow-up endoscopy was performed at 1 month, 2 months, and 4 months after BRTO. It revealed shrinkage of gastric varices and no worsening of esophageal varices after 4 months of BRTO. The patient was free from repeated GV bleeding for 4 months. Our experience proved BRTO could be the other effective treatment for intractable GV bleeding.


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