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Gastroenterology Research and Practice
Volume 2017, Article ID 2376231, 7 pages
Review Article

Extrahepatic Autoimmune Diseases in Patients with Autoimmune Liver Diseases: A Phenomenon Neglected by Gastroenterologists

1Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Tianjin Medical University General Hospital, Tianjin 300052, China
2Department of Rheumatology, Tianjin Medical University General Hospital, Tianjin 300052, China

Correspondence should be addressed to Lu Zhou; moc.621@ul_uohz and Bangmao Wang; moc.kooltuo@6290gnawmb

Received 20 June 2016; Accepted 3 November 2016; Published 16 January 2017

Academic Editor: Paolo Gionchetti

Copyright © 2017 Liping Guo et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Autoimmune liver diseases (AILDs) often coexist with other extrahepatic autoimmune diseases (EHAIDs). The spectrum of EHAIDs in patients with AILDs is similar, whereas the incidence is different. Notably, autoimmune thyroid disease and Sjogren’s syndrome are the most common EHAIDs. Associated extrahepatic diseases may predate the appearance of AILDs or coincide with their onset. More frequently, they may appear during the course and even occur years after the diagnosis of AILDs. Importantly, associated EHAIDs may influence the natural course and prognosis of AILDs. To date, a definite pathophysiological pathway which contributes to the coexistence of AILDs and EHAIDs is still lacking. The current view of autoimmunity clustering involves a common susceptibility genetic background which applies to related pathologies. Herein, we review the current published researches regarding EHAIDs in patients with AILDs, particularly in relation to their clinical impact and pathophysiology. In managing patients with AILDs, gastroenterologists should be aware of the possibly associated EHAIDs to ensure a prompt diagnosis and better outcome.