J Am Coll Radiol. 2021 May;18(5S):S153-S173. doi: 10.1016/j.jacr.2021.02.013.
Cirrhosis is a heterogeneous disease that cannot be studied as a single entity and is classified in two main prognostic stages: compensated and decompensated cirrhosis. Portal hypertension, characterized by a pathological increase of the portal pressure and by the formation of portal-systemic collaterals that bypass the liver, is the initial and main consequence of cirrhosis and is responsible for the majority of its complications. A myriad of treatment options exists for appropriately managing the most common complications of portal hypertension, including acute variceal bleeding and refractory ascites. The American College of Radiology Appropriateness Criteria are evidence-based guidelines for specific clinical conditions that are reviewed annually by a multidisciplinary expert panel. The guideline development and revision include an extensive analysis of current medical literature from peer reviewed journals and the application of well-established methodologies (RAND/UCLA Appropriateness Method and Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development, and Evaluation or GRADE) to rate the appropriateness of imaging and treatment procedures for specific clinical scenarios. In those instances where evidence is lacking or equivocal, expert opinion may supplement the available evidence to recommend imaging or treatment.