Chylous ascites occurs as a result of lymphatic leakage, which contains high concentration of triglycerides. The leakage is caused by various benign or malignant etiologies ranging from congenital lymphatic abnormality to trauma. Lymphangiography has been shown to be effective in the diagnosis of lymphatic leakage and has also been reported to have therapeutic outcome. The development of intranodal technique for lymphangiography has recently made the procedure more widespread. As an adjunctive procedure, percutaneous embolization may be performed which involves use of embolic agents such as N-butyl cyanoacrylate and coil to occlude the leak. Embolization in the lymphatic system was first made popular by the introduction of thoracic duct embolization by Cope et al and has recently led to the development of various techniques for percutaneous embolization. This article reviews the options and techniques for percutaneous treatment of lymphatic leaks in patients presenting with chylous ascites.
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