n South African Gastroenterology Review - Navigating the labyrinth of cholestatic liver disease : review

Volume 8, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 1812-1659



In medicine the term cholestasis is defined as a 'clinical and biochemical syndrome that results when bile flow is impaired from the biliary system to the duodenum'. This term is preferred to obstructive jaundice because mechanical obstruction is not always present. Many patients with cholestatic liver function tests may be completely asymptomatic or present with symptoms related to cirrhosis and portal hypertension, depending on the degree and duration of cholestasis. Early biochemical markers and radiological imaging usually assist the physician in making the diagnosis, sometimes this is fairly simple and other times may be a diagnostic dilemma.

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