Hepatic Encephalopathy

Thiruvengadam Muniraj, Prem A. Kandiah and Ali Al-Khafaji

in ICU Care of Abdominal Organ Transplant Patients

Published on behalf of Oxford University Press

Published in print January 2013 | ISBN: 9780199768899
Published online August 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780199352913 | DOI:

Series: Pittsburgh Critical Care Medicine

Hepatic Encephalopathy

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  • Critical Care
  • Transplant Surgery
  • Medical Microbiology and Virology


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Hepatic encephalopathy (HE) is a term used in the clinical setting to describe a wide spectrum of neuropsychiatric deficits associated with acute liver failure, chronic liver failure, or the presence of a portosystemic shunt. In acute liver failure, HE charts a more lethal course characterized by progression into coma, intracranial hypertension, and cerebral herniation. In patients with end-stage liver disease (ESLD) or cirrhosis, the onset is more insidious, with an expansive repertoire of cognitive and motor deficits. Early symptoms of this syndrome include reversal of sleep patterns, apathy, hypersomnia, irritability, and personal neglect. In later stages, delirium and coma can arise with neurological signs, including asterixis, hyperreflexia, rigidity, and myoclonus.

Chapter.  3104 words. 

Subjects: Critical Care ; Transplant Surgery ; Medical Microbiology and Virology

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