Alternative Names

Intrahepatic cholestasis; Extrahepatic cholestasis

Definition of Cholestasis

Cholestasis is any condition in which the flow of bile from the liver is blocked.

Causes, incidence, and risk factors

There are many causes of cholestasis.

Signs and tests

Blood tests may show higher than normal levels of and alkaline phosphatase.


The underlying cause of cholestasis must be treated.

Expectations (prognosis)

How well a person does depends on the disease causing the condition. Stones in the common bile duct usually can be removed, curing the cholestasis.


David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc., and George F Longstreth, MD, Department of Gastroenterology, Kaiser Permanente Medical Care Program, San Diego, California. – 5/23/2010


ADAM Medical Encyclopedia

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