Distal splenorenal shunt procedure

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Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1]


In medicine, a distal splenorenal shunt procedure (DSRS), also splenorenal shunt procedure and Warren shunt,[1] is a surgical procedure in which the distal splenic vein (a part of the portal venous system) is attached to the left renal vein (a part of the systemic venous system). It is used to treat portal hypertension and its main complication (esophageal varices).[2]

Splenopancreatic and gastric disconnection (SPGD)

DSRS is typically done with splenopancreatic and gastric disconnection (ligation of the gastric veins and pancreatic veins (that drain into the portal vein) and complete detachment of the splenic vein from the portal venous system), as it improves the outcome.[3]

Comparison to TIPS

Survival with a transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt (TIPS) versus a DSRS is thought to be approximately similar,[4][5] but still an area of intensive research.[6]

Both TIPS and DSRS lead to decreased rates of variceal bleeding at the expense of hepatic encephalopathy; however, TIPS appears to have more shunt dysfunction and lead to more encephalopathy and bleeds.[5] DSRS appears to be more cost effective than TIPS.[7]


  1. Warren WD, Henderson JM, Millikan WJ, Galambos JT, Brooks WS, Riepe SP, Salam AA, Kutner MH. Distal splenorenal shunt versus endoscopic sclerotherapy for long-term management of variceal bleeding. Preliminary report of a prospective, randomized trial. Ann Surg. 1986 May;203(5):454-62. PMID 3486641.
  2. Boyer TD, Kokenes DD, Hertzler G, Kutner MH, Henderson JM. Effect of distal splenorenal shunt on survival of patients with primary biliary cirrhosis. Hepatology. 1994 Dec;20(6):1482-6. PMID 7982648.
  3. Hirano S, Kondo S, Ambo Y, Tanaka E, Morikawa T, Okushiba S, Katoh H. Appraisal of DSRS with SPGD for esophagogastric varices: a retrospective comparative study according to the underlying liver diseases. Hepatogastroenterology. 2005 Jan-Feb;52(61):152-5. PMID 15783017.
  4. Rockey DC. Update on the Role of TIPS in the Management of Portal Hypertension. Medscape.com. URL: http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/492983. Accessed on March 18, 2006.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Khan S, Tudur Smith C, Williamson P, Sutton R (2006). "Portosystemic shunts versus endoscopic therapy for variceal rebleeding in patients with cirrhosis". Cochrane database of systematic reviews (Online) (4): CD000553. doi:10.1002/14651858.CD000553.pub2. PMID 17054131.
  6. NIH. Multicenter Randomized Trial of DSRS versus TIPS. URL: http://www.surgery.wisc.edu/general/research/grants_rikkers_nih.shtml. Accessed on March 18, 2006.
  7. Zacks SL, Sandler RS, Biddle AK, Mauro MA, Brown RS Jr. Decision-analysis of transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt versus distal splenorenal shunt for portal hypertension. Hepatology. 1999 May;29(5):1399-405. PMID 10216122.

External links

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