Cirrhosis is the eighth leading cause of "years of lost life" in the US and accounts for approximately 1 to 2% of all deaths in Europe. Patients with cirrhosis have a high risk of developing acute kidney injury. The clinical characteristics of HRS are similar to prerenal uraemia, but the condition does not respond to volume expansion. HRS type 1 is rapidly progressive whereas HRS type 2 has a slower course often associated with refractory ascites. A number of factors can precipitate HRS such as infections, alcoholic hepatitis and bleeding. The monitoring, prevention, early detection and treatment of HRS are essential. This paper reviews the value of early evaluation of renal function based on two new sets of diagnostic criteria. Interventions for HRS type 1 include terlipressin combined with albumin. In HRS type 2 transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt (TIPS) should be considered. For both types of HRS patients should be evaluated for liver transplantation.