Isolated gastric varices are far less prevalent in Western countries where the rate of splenic thrombosis is much lower. However, in Asian countries the entity is more common and therefore a more robust treatment approach has been developed. Balloon-occlusive retrograde transvenous obliteration (BRTO) was first described in 1984 and then revived in 1996. The procedure, while uncommon in the U.S. and not recognized by the AASLD practice guidelines, allows for direct exclusion from the portosystemic system. Here we describe the case of a patient with alcoholic cirrhosis decompensated by bleeding gastric varices treated with BRTO.

Abbrevations: BRTO: balloon-occlusive retrograde transverse obliteration; EGD: esophagogastro-duodenoscopy; HE: hepatic encephalopathy; MELD: Model for End Stage Liver Disease; TIPS: transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt.


cirrhosis, gastric varices, BRTO, TIPS, balloon, variceal bleeding