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Hepatic Abscess Definition
Hepatic Abscess is a pocket of INFECTION that develops within the LIVER, also called liver ABSCESS. Though not common, hepatic abscesses can develop as a complication of GALLBLADDER DISEASE in which infection spreads through the BILE DUCTS to the liver. Symptoms include ABDOMINAL PAIN (often focused in the upper left quadrant), tenderness and rigidity, and FEVER. A person with a hepatic abscess often appears very ill.
Abdominal ULTRASOUND, COMPUTED TOMOGRAPHY (CT) SCAN, and MAGNETIC RESONANCE IMAGING (MRI) are among the diagnostic procedures that help detect hepatic abscess. Treatment is percutaneous aspiration (inserting a needle through the SKIN and into the abscess) or laparoscopic surgery to drain the collected pus, with intensive antibiotic therapy to eradicate the infection. An untreated hepatic abscess can quickly become life-threatening, as the liver’s rich blood supply can carry the pathogenic bacteria throughout the body.