Journal Article
Systematic Review
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Effects of midodrine in patients with ascites due to cirrhosis: Systematic review and meta-analysis.

OBJECTIVE: Midodrine has been reported to improve systemic and renal hemodynamics in patients with cirrhotic ascites. However, the results of clinical trials are conflicting. The aim of this study is to evaluate the effects of midodrine on cirrhotic ascites through a meta-analysis and systematic review.

METHODS: We searched PubMed (January 1966-December 2014), EMBASE (January 1966-December 2014), the Cochrane Library (Issue 11, 2014), ScienceDirect (January 1966-December 2014), and the China National Knowledge Infrastructure (January 1979-December 2014) databases using the terms 'midodrine' AND 'cirrhosis' AND 'ascites' AND 'paracentesis' for all relevant randomized controlled trials using midodrine for treatment of cirrhotic ascites.

RESULTS: In all, 10 trials with a total of 462 patients were included. As a novel therapy for cirrhotic ascites, midodrine was not found to improve survival [odds ratio (OR) 0.81, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.23-2.91]; although it might improve response rates (OR 3.36, 95% CI 1.47-7.69) and reduce plasma renin activity (MD -3.10, 95% CI -5.37 to -0.84). When midodrine was used as an alternative to albumin in large-volume paracentesis, the mortality was higher for midodrine than for albumin (OR 10.76, 95% CI 1.35-85.97). However, there was no statistically significant difference in the development of paracentesis-induced circulatory dysfunction between midodrine group and albumin group (OR 1.69, 95% CI 0.43-6.72).

CONCLUSIONS: Midodrine may have treatment effects on cirrhotic ascites. Better powered and well-designed trials are required to assess the extent of the efficacy of midodrine in specifically targeted patients.

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