COMPARATIVE STUDY
JOURNAL ARTICLE
MULTICENTER STUDY
RANDOMIZED CONTROLLED TRIAL

Terlipressin given by continuous intravenous infusion versus intravenous boluses in the treatment of hepatorenal syndrome: A randomized controlled study

Marta Cavallin, Salvatore Piano, Antonietta Romano, Silvano Fasolato, Anna Chiara Frigo, Gianpiero Benetti, Elisabetta Gola, Filippo Morando, Marialuisa Stanco, Silvia Rosi, Antonietta Sticca, Umberto Cillo, Paolo Angeli
Hepatology: Official Journal of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases 2016, 63 (3): 983-92
26659927

UNLABELLED: In patients with cirrhosis and hepatorenal syndrome (HRS), terlipressin has been used either as continuous intravenous infusion or as intravenous boluses. To date, these two approaches have never been compared. The goal of this study was to compare the administration of terlipressin as continuous intravenous infusion versus intravenous boluses in the treatment of type 1 HRS. Seventy-eight patients were randomly assigned to receive either continuous intravenous infusion (TERLI-INF group) at the initial dose of 2 mg/day or intravenous boluses of terlipressin (TERLI-BOL group) at the initial dose of 0.5 mg every 4 hours. In case of no response, the dose was progressively increased to a final dose of 12 mg/day in both groups. Albumin was given at the same dose in both groups (1 g/kg of body weight at the first day followed by 20-40 g/day). Complete response was defined by decrease of serum creatinine (sCr) from baseline to a final value ≤133 μmol/L, partial response by a decrease ≥50% of sCr from baseline to a final value >133 μmol/L. The rate of adverse events was lower in the TERLI-INF group (35.29%) than in the TERLI-BOL group (62.16%, P < 0.025). The rate of response to treatment, including both complete and partial response, was not significantly different between the two groups (76.47% versus 64.85%; P value not significant). The mean daily effective dose of terlipressin was lower in the TERLI-INF group than in the TERLI-BOL group (2.23 ± 0.65 versus 3.51 ± 1.77 mg/day; P < 0.05).

CONCLUSION: Terlipressin given by continuous intravenous infusion is better tolerated than intravenous boluses in the treatment of type 1 HRS. Moreover, it is effective at doses lower than those required for intravenous bolus administration.

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