Concise review of current concepts on nomenclature and pathophysiology of hepatic encephalopathy.
Hepatic encephalopathy is a neuropsychiatric complication of liver cirrhosis the symptoms of which may vary from imperceptible to severe, invaliding, and even lethal. Minimal hepatic encephalopathy is also important because of its tendency to impair patients’ cognitive functions and quality of life. The polyetiological pathogenesis of hepatic encephalopathy is intensively studied. A general consensus exists that not only excess of ammonia but also inflammatory, oxidative, and other processes are significant in the development of hepatic encephalopathy.
Correspondence to J. Valantinas Centre of Hepatology, Gastroenterology and Dietetics, Clinic of Gastroenterology, Nephrourology and Surgery, Faculty of Medicine, Vilnius University, Vilnius, Lithuania. Electronic address: email@example.com
Received 12 December 2013, accepted 24 April 2014, available online 27 June 2014.