A portacaval shunt (or portal caval shunt) is a treatment for high blood pressure in the liver. A connection is made between the portal vein, which supplies 75% of the liver's blood, and the inferior vena cava, the vein that drains blood from the lower two-thirds of the body. The most common causes of liver disease resulting in portal hypertension are cirrhosis caused by alcohol abuse and viral hepatitis (hepatitis B and C). Less common causes include diseases such as hemochromatosis, primary biliary cirrhosis (PBC), and portal vein thrombosis.
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