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Schistosomal portal hypertension: Randomized trial comparing endoscopic therapy alone or preceded by esophagogastric devascularization and splenectomy

Celina Maria Costa Lacet, João Batista Neto, Laercio Tenório Ribeiro, Francisco Silva Oliveira, Rozangela Fernandes Wyszomirska, Edna Strauss


Background. Upper gastrointestinal bleeding is a major cause of morbidity and mortality in patients with portal hypertension secondary to schistosomiasis mansoni. Aim. To evaluate the efficacy of combined surgery and sclerotherapy versus endoscopic treatment alone in the prophylaxis of esophageal variceal rebleeding due to portal hypertension in schistosomiasis. Material and methods. During a two-years period consecutive patients with schistosomiasis and a recent bleeding history were evaluated for prospective randomization. Absolute exclusion criteria were alcoholism or other liver diseases, whereas platelet count < 50,000/mm3, INR > 1.5 or presence of gastric varices were relative exclusion criteria. By random allocation 25 (group A) have received endoscopic sclerotherapy for esophageal varices alone and 22 (group B) combined treatment: esophagogastric devascularization with splenectomy followed by sclerotherapy. Interim analysis at 24 months has shown significant statistical differences between the groups and the randomization was halted. Results. Mean age was 38.9 ± 15.4 years and 58.46% were male. Mean follow-up was 38.6 ± 20.1 months. Endoscopic comparison of the size of esophageal varices before and after treatment did not show significant differences among the two groups. Treatment efficacy was assessed by the rate of recurrent esophageal variceal bleeding, that was more common in group A- 9/25 patients (36.0%) vs. 2/22 (9.0%) in group B (p = 0.029). Other complications were odynophagia, dysphagia and esophageal ulcer in group A and ascites and portal vein thrombosis in the surgical group. Conclusion. In portal hypertension due to schistosomiasis, combined surgical and endoscopic treatment was more effective for the prevention of recurrent esophageal variceal bleeding.

Key words. Treatment of portal hypertension, Sclerotherapy, Surgery for portal hypertension, Hepatosplenic schistosomiasis, Variceal bleeding prophylaxis

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The Official Journal of the Mexican Association of Hepatology, the Latin-American Association for the Study of the Liver and the Canadian Association for the Study of the Liver

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