Transfusion-dependent anaemia and portal hypertension are recognised complications of hereditary haemorrhagic telangiectasia (HHT). The anaemia is a result of chronic bleeding from gastrointestinal telangiectasias, which are usually multiple and located throughout the gastrointestinal tract. As a result, treatment with argon plasma coagulation via gastroscopy and or colonoscopy is often insufficient to prevent ongoing blood loss. Portal hypertension in HHT occurs as a result of blood shunting between the hepatic artery and the portal vein within the liver. The somatostatin analogue octreotide has been used as a treatment for bleeding angiodysplasia; however, its possible role as a treatment for diuretic intractable ascites secondary to portal hypertension has not been previously established. The authors report a case that apparently illustrates a dual benefit of long-acting octreotide in the management of both occult bleeding and refractory ascites in a patient with HHT.
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Competing interests None.
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