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A Hepato-Portal or Liver exam examines blood flow in the arteries carrying oxygen rich blood to and from the liver. The test is used to assess the quality and direction of blood flow to assist in diagnosis of portal hypertension and identify possible portal vein and/or hepatic vein thrombosis (blood clots). During the examination, the technologist will pass a risk-free, painless non-invasive ultrasound transducer (probe or wand) over your upper abdomen to examine the blood flow in the vessels in and around the liver and spleen. Other arteries routinely examined include the abdominal aorta and the splenic arteries.


  • Suspected portal hypertension
  • Abdominal pain or distention
  • Suspected Cruveilhier-Baumgarten or Budd-Chiari syndrome
  • Evaluation for transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunting (TIPS)

Patient Preparation

Patients should fast for 6-8 hours prior to their exam. However, patients should take current medications as usual with a small sip of water.