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Hepatic encephalopathy: classification and treatment

  • Jasmohan S. Bajaj
    Correspondence
    Address: Division of Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition, 1201 Broad Rock Boulevard, Virginia Commonwealth University and McGuire VA Medical Center, Richmond, VA 23249, USA. Tel.: +1 804 675 5802; fax: +1 804 675 5816.
    Affiliations
    Division of Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition, Virginia Commonwealth University and McGuire VA Medical Center, Richmond, VA, USA
    Search for articles by this author
      Hepatic encephalopathy (HE) is a major complication of liver disease that has a multi-faceted pathophysiology.
      • Stepanova M.
      • Mishra A.
      • Venkatesan C.
      • Younossi Z.M.
      In-hospital mortality and economic burden associated with hepatic encephalopathy in the United States from 2005 to 2009.
      It is associated with a substantial burden to the individual, their caregivers, society and the overall healthcare system. The emergence of HE as a leading cause of re-admissions, mortality and psychosocial impairment in cirrhosis should be a rallying cry to improve its management.
      • Bajaj J.S.
      • Reddy K.R.
      • Tandon P.
      • Wong F.
      • Kamath P.S.
      • Garcia-Tsao G.
      • et al.
      The 3-month readmission rate remains unacceptably high in a large North American cohort of patients with cirrhosis.
      The current demographic trend towards an aging population makes diagnosis challenging and increases the burden of HE, since most older patients are not liver transplant candidates.
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