[Nutritional support in patients with liver cirrhosis].Gastroenterol Hepatol 2012; 35(8):594-601GH
Given the liver's multiple synthetic, regulatory and detoxifying functions, one of the characteristics accompanying severe hepatocellular dysfunction is the presence of malnutrition. This disorder is highly frequent in liver cirrhosis, even in the relatively early stages of the disease. Independently of the cause of the cirrhosis, poor nutritional status is associated with a worse prognosis and therefore early intervention to correct nutrient deficiency can prolong life expectancy, improve quality of life, reduce complications and increase the probability of successful transplantation. The present article reviews current knowledge of the diagnosis and management of malnutrition in patients with cirrhosis. Special attention is paid to the concept of the late evening snack and its characteristics, composition and probable benefits in the course of the disease.