RIFAXIMIN EFFECTIVENESS IN PREVENTING THE RECURRENCE OF HEPATIC ENCEPHALOPATHY AMONG PATIENTS WITH LIVER CIRRHOSIS
Objective: To determine the effectiveness of rifaximin in reducing the frequency of recurrence of hepatic encephalopathy among patients with liver cirrhosis.
Study Design: Descriptive case series.
Place and Duration of Study: Outpatient department of Combined Military Hospital Peshawar from Jan to Jun 2017.
Methodology: We included one hundred patients of either gender having liver cirrhosis with child Pugh B or C class with at least two previous episodes of hepatic encephalopathy. Patients were followed for six months to have any recurrence of hepatic encephalopathy. Conventional group was defined as having standard regimen including lactulose. Rifaximin treatment was defined as a 550mg BD daily dosing along with standard prescription.
Results: Fifty patients were on conventional treatment to prevent recurrence of hepatic encephalopathy while 50 patients were using rifaximin in addition to standard prescription. The average age of 54.8 ± 6.1 years with 58% male patients and 48% in child-pugh B class. Thirty (30%) patients developed hepatic encephalopathy among the study population. 14 patients with recurrence belong to rifaximin group while 16 were on conventional treatment (p-value >0.05) showing a non-significant difference. Post stratification revealed only age as a significant predictor of recurrence of hepatic encephalopathy in our study population (p<0.05).
Conclusion: Frequency of hepatic encephalopathy is similar in conventional treatment with Lactulose over six months of follow up as compared with rifaximin.