Ischemic Hepatitis in Congestive Heart Failure after an Episode of Hypotension
Ora Shovman, Jacob George, Yehuda Shoenfeld
Dept. of Medicine B and Autoimmune Disease Clinic Research Unit, Sheba Medical Center, Tel Hashomer and Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel Aviv University
Ischemic hepatitis can occur as an acute episode in advanced congestive heart failure (CHF). The mechanism is massive necrosis of the central lobules resulting from acute hypoxia when low cardiac output further reduces oxygen supply, aggravating underlying congestion due to poor venous outflow. We describe a 70-year-old woman with congestive heart failure for 7 years who was admitted with jaundice, vomiting, abdominal pain and oliguria after an episode of hypotension. The diagnosis of ischemic hepatitis was established by a documented episode of severe hypotension, followed by elevation of serum transaminases, a rise in serum bilirubin and LDH levels, prolonged prothrombin time and acute renal failure. Other causes of acute hepatitis, such as a virus or drugs were excluded, and improved liver and renal function followed hemodynamic stabilization. We conclude that ischemic hepatitis should be considered whenever acute hepatitis follows a recent episode of systemic hypotension, especially in the context of concomitant CHF.