Safety and Efficacy of Anticoagulation in Patients with Cirrhosis: A Meta-Analysis

Huan Chen, Jiaming Lei, Sicheng Liang, Gang Luo, Mingming Deng, Muhan Lü
Canadian Journal of Gastroenterology & Hepatology 2021, 2021: 8859602

Background and Aims: Portal vein thrombosis is a serious adverse event that occurs during liver cirrhosis. We performed a meta-analysis to evaluate the safety and efficacy of anticoagulant therapy and prophylactic anticoagulant therapy in cirrhosis patients with (/without) portal vein thrombosis.

Methods: Eligible comparative studies were identified by searching the following electronic databases: PubMed, Embase, Cochrane Library, Web of Science, and CNKI. A meta-analysis was performed to calculate odds ratios and 95% confidence intervals using fixed-effects models. Recanalization and thrombus progression were defined as the primary outcomes. Secondary outcomes included adverse events and death mortality.

Results: A total of 3479 patients were included in this analysis. Compared with the control group, the recanalization rate in the anticoagulant therapy group was increased ( P < 0.00001) in patients with cirrhosis and portal vein thrombosis without increasing adverse events. Multiple use of enoxaparin in small doses is safer than single large doses ( P =0.004). Direct oral anticoagulants are more effective ( P < 0.00001) and safer than traditional anticoagulants. Prophylactic anticoagulant therapy can effectively prevent portal vein thrombosis formation ( P < 0.00001).

Conclusions: Anticoagulation therapy can treat or prevent portal vein thrombosis in patients with liver cirrhosis and is a relatively safe treatment.

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