Reviewed by Brian R. Robinson, MD
Hepatic vein obstruction, also know as Budd-Chiari syndrome, involves the blockage of the hepatic vein, the major vein traveling out of the liver. This clotting results in the obstruction of blood flow from the liver to the heart. Varying degrees of liver damage may result. Most patients with hepatic vein obstruction have an underlying condition that predisposes them to blood clotting.
Blockage of the hepatic vein usually occurs in one of two ways: with the formation of a thrombus (blood clot) in hepatic vein, or when a mass of tissue – such as a tumor or scar tissue – presses against the vein with enough force to cut off the flow of blood.