Veno-occlusive disease/sinusoidal obstruction syndrome (VOD/SOS) of the liver is a serious, early complication of haematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT), severe and very severe forms of which are associated with a high mortality rate. A wide variety of patient, disease and treatment-related risk factors for VOD/SOS have been identified. Several bodies have published recommendations for the diagnosis, prevention and management of VOD/SOS following HSCT. A group of regional experts have developed a consensus statement on the diagnosis, prevention and management of VOD/SOS in the Middle East and North Africa region to help in the management of HSCT patients in the region. Risk factors of particular relevance in the region include iron overload in thalassaemia patients, some hereditary metabolic disorders due to consanguinity and infection with hepatitis virus B or C. Recommendations include diagnosis of VOD/SOS based on established clinical criteria, prophylaxis with defibrotide and/or ursodeoxycholic acid in patients at increased risk of VOD/SOS, and treatment with defibrotide for patients with severe/very severe VOD/SOS (and, if clinically indicated, in those with moderate or rapidly progressing VOD/SOS, as per the new European Society for Blood and Marrow Transplantation classification).
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