Sunday, October 5, 2008

Updated 5/12/2012
A portosystemic shunt (PSS) also know as an Abernethy malformation or a liver shunt, is a vascular connection effecting the body's circulatory system.
In most people, blood from the stomach, intestines, spleen and pancreas drains into the liver through a large vein called the "portal" vein. With a portosystemic shunt, blood draining from the portal system bypasses ("shunts" past) the liver and directly enters the general circulation. As a result the liver does not get a chance to clean or filter the blood.
A portosystemic shunt can be present at birth (i.e. congenital) or acquired as the result of an underlying liver disease that was not present at birth. This blog discusses a congenital portosystemic shunt.
Dr. Karen Tobias from the University of Tennessee is a liver shunt "guru" in the animal world.
I have included her website for detailed information.
Click on the link below.


For a detailed medical description by Dr. R. Superina and Dr. Morgan of congenital portosystemic shunt classifications see the right column of this blog.