Haemodynamic studies in 8 tribal patients from central India with veno-occlusive disease of the liver are reported. The disease was caused by eating cereals contaminated with seeds of a crotalaria species rich in toxic pyrrolizidine alkaloids similar to monocrotaline and fulvine. All patients showed raised hepatic venous wedge pressures and pressure gradients between hepatic venous wedge and free hepatic vein. Significant pressure gradients were also observed in the inferior vena cava. Right and left heart pressures were normal. Cardiac and stroke indices and ventricular work were significantly increased while systemic and pulmonary resistances were reduced. Hepatic blood flow was also reduced. Hepatic venograms were abnormal and the changes correlated well with the pressure gradients between hepatic venous wedge and free hepatic vein and with the histological changes in the liver.
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