Background & aims: The prognostic impact of acute decompensation (AD), i.e. the development of complications that require hospitalization, has recently been assessed. However, complications of cirrhosis do not necessarily require hospitalization and can develop progressively, as in the recently defined non-acute decompensation (NAD). Nevertheless, there is no data regarding the incidence and prognostic impact of NAD. The aim of the study was to evaluate the incidence and the prognostic impact of NAD and AD in outpatients with cirrhosis. Methods: A total of 617 outpatients with cirrhosis from two Italian tertiary centers (Padua and Milan) were enrolled from January 2003 to June 2021 and followed prospectively until the end of the study, death or liver transplantation. The complications registered during follow-up were considered as AD if they required hospitalization, or NAD if managed at the outpatient clinic. Results: During follow-up, 154 patients (25.0% of total patients) developed no complications, 69 patients (44.8%) developed NAD and 85 (55.2%) developed AD, while 29 patients with NAD (42.0%) developed a further episode of AD during follow-up. Sixty-month survival was significantly higher in patients with no decompensation than in patients with NAD or AD. On multivariable analysis, AD (hazard ratio [HR] 21.07, p <0.001), NAD (HR 7.13, p <0.001), the etiological cure of cirrhosis (HR 0.38, p <0.001) and model for end-stage liver disease score (HR 1.12, p = 0.003) were found to be independent predictors of mortality. Conclusions: The first decompensation is non-acute in almost 50% of outpatients, though such events are still associated with decreased survival compared to no decompensation. Patients who develop NAD must be treated with extreme care and monitored closely to prevent the development of AD. Impact and implications: This multicenter study is the first to investigate the role of non-acute decompensation (NAD) in patients with cirrhosis. In fact, while the unfavorable impact of acute decompensation is well known, there is currently a dearth of evidence on NAD, despite it being a common occurrence in clinical practice. Our data show that almost half of decompensations in patients with cirrhosis can be considered NAD and that such events are associated with a higher risk of mortality than no decompensation. This study has important clinical implications because it highlights the need to carefully consider patients who develop NAD, in order to prevent further decompensation and reduce mortality.

A new clinical and prognostic characterization of the patterns of decompensation of cirrhosis

Tonon, Marta;Barone, Anna;Incicco, Simone;Gambino, Carmine;Gagliardi, Roberta;Piano, Salvatore;Angeli, Paolo
2024

Abstract

Background & aims: The prognostic impact of acute decompensation (AD), i.e. the development of complications that require hospitalization, has recently been assessed. However, complications of cirrhosis do not necessarily require hospitalization and can develop progressively, as in the recently defined non-acute decompensation (NAD). Nevertheless, there is no data regarding the incidence and prognostic impact of NAD. The aim of the study was to evaluate the incidence and the prognostic impact of NAD and AD in outpatients with cirrhosis. Methods: A total of 617 outpatients with cirrhosis from two Italian tertiary centers (Padua and Milan) were enrolled from January 2003 to June 2021 and followed prospectively until the end of the study, death or liver transplantation. The complications registered during follow-up were considered as AD if they required hospitalization, or NAD if managed at the outpatient clinic. Results: During follow-up, 154 patients (25.0% of total patients) developed no complications, 69 patients (44.8%) developed NAD and 85 (55.2%) developed AD, while 29 patients with NAD (42.0%) developed a further episode of AD during follow-up. Sixty-month survival was significantly higher in patients with no decompensation than in patients with NAD or AD. On multivariable analysis, AD (hazard ratio [HR] 21.07, p <0.001), NAD (HR 7.13, p <0.001), the etiological cure of cirrhosis (HR 0.38, p <0.001) and model for end-stage liver disease score (HR 1.12, p = 0.003) were found to be independent predictors of mortality. Conclusions: The first decompensation is non-acute in almost 50% of outpatients, though such events are still associated with decreased survival compared to no decompensation. Patients who develop NAD must be treated with extreme care and monitored closely to prevent the development of AD. Impact and implications: This multicenter study is the first to investigate the role of non-acute decompensation (NAD) in patients with cirrhosis. In fact, while the unfavorable impact of acute decompensation is well known, there is currently a dearth of evidence on NAD, despite it being a common occurrence in clinical practice. Our data show that almost half of decompensations in patients with cirrhosis can be considered NAD and that such events are associated with a higher risk of mortality than no decompensation. This study has important clinical implications because it highlights the need to carefully consider patients who develop NAD, in order to prevent further decompensation and reduce mortality.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11577/3509240
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