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Home > Patients & Visitors > Health Library > Cirrhosis: Vasoconstrictor Medicines for Variceal Bleeding
Medicines that constrict small blood vessels and reduce blood flow
to the portal vein are used to treat sudden (acute) bleeding from enlarged
veins (varices) in the digestive tract (variceal bleeding).
Octreotide is the main medicine
used in the United States to treat variceal bleeding.
These medicines also may be used along with endoscopic treatment.
Adding medicine to endoscopic treatment works better to control bleeding than endoscopic treatment alone.1
Side effects of these medicines may include:
Garcia-Tsao G, et al. (2007). Prevention and management of gastroesophageal varices and variceal hemorrhage in cirrhosis. American Journal of Gastroenterology, 102(9): 2086–2102.
Current as of:
March 12, 2014
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & W. Thomas London, MD - Hepatology
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North Kansas City Hospital.