Subcapsular liver hematoma in HELLP syndrome: Evaluation of diagnostic and therapeutic options—A unicenter study



      Subcapsular liver hematoma formation has been reported in less than 2% of pregnancies complicated by HELLP (hemolysis, elevated liver enzymes, low platelets) syndrome. The purpose of this study was to identify the main diagnostic and therapeutic options for management of these patients.

      Study design

      In this 10-year retrospective review, we performed a computer-directed search of all cases of confirmed HELLP syndrome with hepatic hematoma treated in the surgical department of our tertiary care referral medical center.


      Five patients with subcapsular liver hematoma in HELLP syndrome could be identified. All patients received transabdominal ultrasound, computed tomography, or magnetic resonance imaging. Conservative treatment was successful in three patients. Emergency surgical intervention was necessary in two patients, including one liver transplantation.


      The case series shows the full diagnostic spectrum with transabdominal ultrasound, computed tomography, and magnetic resonance imaging, as well as the different therapeutic options varying from conservative therapy to operative management, including liver transplantation.


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