Hepatoportal Sclerosis in Childhood: Some Presenting With Cholestatic Features (A Re-evaluation of 12 Children)

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Hepatoportal sclerosis (HPS) is a syndrome of obscure etiology, and is one of the causes of noncirrhotic portal hypertension (PH). We aimed to investigate this heterogeneous group of patients whose presentation showed cholestatic features, histopathologically. Between 1999 and 2009, 12 children diagnosed with HPS were retrospectively evaluated. HPS was diagnosed with evidence of PH, noncirrhotic liver biopsy with typical histopathologic findings, and exclusion of other possible causes of PH. The data was obtained from pathology reports and microscopic slides. In histopathological reevaluation fibrosis state, aberrant portal vessels, portal tract dilation and inflammation, ductular reaction, regenerative nodular hyperplasia, acinar transformation, presence of bile pigment, and cholangitis were noted. Serum alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase, gamma-glutamyl, alkaline phosphatase, bilirubin, and albumin levels, presentation patterns, and radiologic findings were assessed. Familial relationship degrees were also investigated. Twelve patients (9 boys, 3 girls; 3-180 months) were re-evaluated. Two pairs of the patients were siblings. Parents of 7 patients were consanguine. The most common presenting symptom was abdominal distension. Histopathologically, all patients had hepatoportal sclerosis/intimal fibrous thickening of portal vein and periportal fibrosis, acinar transformation, and regenerative nodules not surrounded by fibrous septae. Eight patients had vascular aberrations, 7 had ductular reaction, 1 showed mild cholangitis, and 1 had canalicular bile pigment. We conclude that genetic predisposition might be a possible factor for HPS development in Turkish patients and it should be kept in mind that cholestatic features noticed in histopathological evaluation may represent a variant group in the spectrum of HPS.

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