The article "Alfapump® system vs. large volume paracentesis for refractory ascites: A multicenter randomized controlled study" published in the Journal of Hepatology provides valuable insights into efficacy, safety and cost outcomes of the innovative method for managing refractory ascites.
- A randomized controlled trial, in seven centers, with six month patient observation was conducted. Primary outcome was time to first LVP. Secondary outcomes included paracentesis requirement, safety, health-related quality-of-life (HRQoL), and survival. Nutrition, hemodynamics, and renal injury biomarkers were assessed in a sub-study at three months.
- Sixty patients were randomized and 58 were analyzed (27 AP, 31 SoC, mean age 61.9years, mean MELD 11.7). Eighteen patients were included in the sub-study.
- Compared with SoC, median time to first LVP was not reached after six months in the AP group, meaning a significant reduction in LVP requirement for the AP patients (AP, median not reached; SoC, 15.0days (HR 0.13; 95%CI 13.0-22.0; p<0.001), and AP patients also showed significantly improved Chronic Liver Disease Questionnaire (CLDQ) scores compared with SoC patients (p<0.05 between treatment arms).
- Improvements in nutritional parameters were observed for hand-grip strength (p=0.044) and body mass index (p<0.001) in the sub-study.
- Compared with SoC, more AP patients reported adverse events (AEs; 96.3% vs. 77.4%, p=0.057) and serious AEs (85.2 vs. 45.2%, p=0.002). AEs consisted predominantly of acute kidney injury in the immediate post-operative period, and re-intervention for pump related issues, and were treatable in most cases.
- Survival was similar in AP and SoC
Read the full article here.