Abdomen, Pelvis & Perineum
A patient with cirrhosis of the liver presents with esophageal varices. Increased retrograde pressure in which veins caused the varices (AIIMS – Nov - 2014)
• Oesophagealvarices are mainly due to dilatation of small veins at porto-systemic anastomosis. It is formed between branches of left gastric veins & azygous veins.
• In Portal hypertension (secondary to cirrhosis) the portal blood starts flowing in retrograde direction through the portal vein and then back into left gastric vein. Then it reaches the branches of azygous vein and ultimately in to the heart via superior vena cava. Note that the blood flow in azygous vein will be at high pressure but not retrograde