Bleeding hepatic adenoma: expectant treatment to limit the extent of liver resection

Heeringa, Brian; Sardi, Armando; Heeringa, B; Sardi, A
October 2001
American Surgeon;Oct2001, Vol. 67 Issue 10, p927
Academic Journal
journal article
Hepatic adenomas (HAs) are benign but can present as an acute surgical emergency. The relationship between HA and oral contraceptives (OCs) has been well documented and there have been several reports of tumor regression after the withdrawal of hormonal agents. However, not all HAs regress in this manner; have been reported to remain stable, increase in size, hemorrhage, or rarely, undergo malignant transformation. Given the unpredictable nature of these lesions they are generally treated surgically. In July 1995 a patient with a 6-year history of OC use was admitted with a history of sudden-onset right upper quadrant abdominal pain of 2 days' duration. The clinical picture and imaging studies led to the diagnosis of a bleeding hepatic adenoma without rupture. She was treated expectantly for a period of 14 months before surgery. This allowed the tumor to significantly decrease in size and thus limit the extent of resection. If the patient presented in this case had undergone surgery at the time of initial diagnosis a right hepatic lobectomy as opposed to a wedge resection would have been required. Treating this patient expectantly significantly decreased the potential morbidity associated with a larger resection.


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