High Dose Oral Furosemide with Salt Ingestion in the Treatment of Refractory Ascites of Liver Cirrhosis

Tolga Yakar, Mehmet Demir, Ozlem Dogan, Alper Parlakgumus, Birol Ozer, Ender Serin


Purpose: We aimed to evaluate and compare the efficacy and safety of high-dose furosemide+salt orally by comparing HSS+ furosemide (i.v.) and repeated paracentesis in patients with RA.

Methods: This was a prospective study of 78 cirrhotic patients with RA, randomized into three groups: Group A (n= 25) i.v. furosemide (200-300 mg bid) and 3% hypotonic saline solution (HSS) (once or twice a day); Group B (n= 26) oral furosemide tablets (360-520 mg bid) and salt (2.5 g bid); and, Group C (n= 27) repeated large-volume-paracentesis (RLVP) with albumin infusion. Patients without hyperkalemia were administrated 100 mg of spironolactone/day. During the follow-up; INR, creatinine, and total bilirubin levels were measured to determine the change in MELD (model of end stage liver disease) score.

Results: Hepatic encephalopathy (HE), severe episodes of spontaneous bacterial peritonitis (SBP) and pleural effusions (PE) occurred more frequently in Group C. Improvement in Child-Pugh and MELD score was better in Group A and B than Group C. In Group B, improvements were seen in the Child-Pugh and MELD score, reduction in body weight, duration and number of hospitalization. In Groups A and B, remarkable increases in diuresis were observed (706±116 to 2425±633 mL and 691±111 to 2405±772 mL) and serum sodium levels also improved. HE and SBP were occurred more often in group C (p<0.002). Hospitalization decreased significantly in Group B (p<0.001). There was no significant difference in survival among groups.

Conclusion: High dose oral furosemide with salt ingestion may be an alternative, effective, safe and well-tolerated method of therapy for RA.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.25011/cim.v39i6.27502


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