The nature of variceal haemorrhage in cirrhotic patients with its complex range of complications makes rigid guidelines inappropriate. These guidelines deal specifically with the management of varices in patients with cirrhosis under the following subheadings:
(1) primary prophylaxis;
(2) acute variceal haemorrhage;
(3) secondary prophylaxis of variceal haemorrhage; and
(4) gastric varices.
They are not designed to deal with
(1) the management of the underlying liver disease;
(2) the management of variceal haemorrhage in children; or
(3) variceal haemorrhage from other aetiological conditions.