Liver function and encephalopathy after partial vs direct side-to-side portacaval shunt: a prospective randomized clinical trial.Surgery. 2000 Jun; 127(6):614-21.S
The aim of this study was to determine, in a prospective randomized clinical trial, whether the partial portacaval shunt offers any advantage in terms of liver function and encephalopathy rate when compared with direct side-to-side direct portacaval shunt.
Forty-six "good risk" patients with cirrhosis and with documented variceal hemorrhage were randomly assigned to either a partial shunt procedure (achieved by 10-mm diameter interposition portacaval H-graft) or direct small-diameter side-to-side portacaval anastomosis.
Operative mortality was zero in both groups. During the follow-up period, encephalopathy developed in 3 patients in the partial shunt group and 9 in the direct shunt group (P =.04). Kaplan-Meier analysis demonstrated that encephalopathy-free survival was significantly longer in the partial shunt group (P =.025). Direct shunt patients had significant hepatic functional deterioration postoperatively compared with the partial shunt group.
The partial portacaval shunt effectively controls variceal hemorrhage. Compared with direct side-to-side portacaval shunt, partial shunt preserves long-term hepatic function and minimizes postoperative encephalopathy. We conclude that the partial portacaval shunt is the preferred approach over direct shunts for patients with cirrhosis and with variceal bleeding.