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HOME > J Pathol Transl Med > Volume 43(1); 2009 > Article
Original Article The Clinicopathological Parameters for Making the Differential Diagnosis of Neonatal Cholestasis.
Heejin Lee, Jun Kang, Kyung Mo Kim, Joo Young Jang, Se Jin Jang, Eunsil Yu
Journal of Pathology and Translational Medicine 2009;43(1):43-47
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4132/KoreanJPathol.2009.43.1.43
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1Department of Pathology, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Asan Medical Center, Seoul, Korea. esyu@amc.seoul.kr
2Department of Pediatrics, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Asan Medical Center, Seoul, Korea.

BACKGROUND
The diseases that cause neonatal cholestasis display several overlapping clinical feature. Making the differential diagnosis using liver biopsy specimens from infants with neonatal cholestasis is important for delivering the proper treatment.
METHODS
We assessed the clinical manifestations, laboratory data, and histopathologic features of the pretreatment liver biopsy specimens from patients suffering with biliary atresia (n=66), intrahepatic bile duct paucity (n=15), and neonatal hepatitis (n=21).
RESULTS
The gender distribution was nearly equal for the patients with biliary atresia and intrahepatic bile duct paucity, whereas males predominated for the cases of neonatal hepatitis. Only the gamma-glutamyl transferase level differed significantly amongst the groups. The diagnostic features for making the differential diagnosis of bile duct lesions included marked bile ductular proliferation, severe fibrosis, and bile duct loss. The difference of the average percentage of portal tracts with bile duct loss was statistically significant between the patients with intrahepatic bile duct paucity (73.9%) and those patients with neonatal hepatitis (39.1%) (p<0.001).
CONCLUSIONS
Bile ductular proliferation, bile duct loss, and advanced fibrosis are useful for the differential diagnosis of neonatal cholestasis. Moreover, stricter diagnostic criteria for bile duct loss (more than 2/3 of bile ducts) should be applied for the definitive diagnosis of intrahepatic bile duct paucity, because bile duct loss also frequently occurs in infants suffering with neonatal hepatitis.


JPTM : Journal of Pathology and Translational Medicine