Factor Five Leiden


This is a rare problem that results from blood clotting in the major hepatic veins flowing out of the liver. It affects men and women both and can effect all age groups but especially those between 20-40 years of age. This syndrome can cause the blood to back up, increasing the pressure in these veins which ends up leading to enlargement of the liver. There will be an associated accumulation of fluid in the abdomen, which will cause the abdomen to swell. This swelling is called ascites which results from blood plasma leaking out of the now enlarged liver. The main symptoms are pain in the upper right-hand portion of the abdomen, where the liver is located, and the swelling of the abdomen from the fluid accumulation. There may also be mild jaundice. The onset can be acute (found quickly), or sub-acute, in which case it could take weeks or months before the portal hypertension and the liver failure becomes apparent. The most common cause of this syndrome in the United States is blood disorders. Although sometimes there can be other causes as well, such as oral contraceptives, body changes during pregnancy and postpartum, as well as certain infections, or injury to the abdomen and phlebitis.

The mesenteric veins are the major veins that drain the blood away from the intestines. When one of them becomes blocked by a blood clot then the blood supply to the intestines will be compromised and can result in tissue death within the intestines. This is known as necrosis, and the length of the area of involvement would need to be surgically removed. The cause of mesenteric venous thrombosis is present in people with hypercoaguable states in which the blood is more likely to clot. It is also seen with cirrhosis, diverticulitis and pancreatitis. Most cases of mesenteric venous thrombosis will be chronic and progress slowly with chronic pain. [PART 3] [PART 2] [PART 1]