Hepatic amebiasis; Extraintestinal amebiasis; Abscess - amebic liver
Amebic liver abscess is a collection of pus in the liver in response to an intestinal parasite.
Amebic liver abscess is caused by Entamoeba histolytica, the same parasite that causes amebiasis, an intestinal infection that is also called amebic dysentery. After an infection has occurred, the parasite may be carried by the blood from the intestines to the liver.
The disease spreads from eating food or water that has been contaminated with feces (sometimes due to the use of human waste as fertilizer), and through person-to-person contact.
The infection occurs worldwide, but is most common in tropical areas where crowded living conditions and poor sanitation exist. Africa, Latin America, Southeast Asia, and India have significant health problems from this disease.
Risk factors for amebic liver abscess include:
Donnelly JP, Blijlevens NMA, DePauw BE. Entamoeba species including amebiasis. In: Mandell GL, Bennett JE, Dolin R, eds. Mandell, Douglas, and Bennett's Principles and Practice of Infectious Disease. 7th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier; 2009:chap 273.
Neuschwander-Tetri BA. Bacterial, parasitic, fungal, and granulomatous liver disease. In: Goldman L, Ausiello D, eds. Cecil Medicine. 23rd ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier; 2007:chap 155.
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