Two teenage patients with fulminant hepatic failure progressing to grade 4 encephalopathy with clinical signs of cerebral oedema are described, in whom permanent neurological injury (involving the brain stem in one and the cerebral cortex in the other) was the sequel to an otherwise full recovery. The present day management of cerebral oedema may, as in these two cases, ensure the survival of patients with fulminant hepatic failure who would previously have been likely to die from the effects of raised intracranial pressure. As a result it is now possible more recovered cases will be seen with residual neurological deficits, a previously very rarely recorded event.
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