Advances in the management of children with chronic liver disease have enabled many to survive into adulthood with or without their native livers, so that the most common of these conditions are becoming increasingly common in adult hepatology practice. Because the aetiologies of chronic liver disease in children may vary significantly from those in adulthood, adults with paediatric-onset chronic liver disease may often present with clinical manifestations unfamiliar to their adulthood physician. Transition of medical care to adult practice requires that the adulthood medical staff (primary physicians and subspecialists) have a comprehensive knowledge of childhood liver disease and their implications, and of the differences in caring for these patients. Pending still unavailable Scientific Society guidelines, this article examines causes, presentation modes, evaluation, management, and complications of the main paediatric-onset chronic liver diseases, and discusses key issues to aid in planning a program of transition from paediatric to adult patients.
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