Carvedilol versus propranolol effect on hepatic venous pressure gradient at 1 month in patients with index variceal bleed: RCT.Hepatol Int 2017; 11(2):181-187HI
BACKGROUND AND AIMS
Endoscopic variceal ligation (EVL) plus beta blocker is the mainstay treatment after index bleed to prevent rebleed. Primary objective of this study was to compare EVL plus propranolol versus EVL plus carvedilol on reduction of HVPG after 1 month of therapy.
Patients of cirrhosis presenting with index esophageal variceal bleed received standard treatment (Somatostatin therapy f/b EVL) following which HVPG was measured and patients were randomized to propranolol or carvedilol group if HVPG was >12 mmHg. Standard endotherapy protocol was continued in both groups. HVPG was again measured at 1 month of treatment.
Out of 129 patients of index esophageal variceal bleed, 59 patients were eligible and randomized into carvedilol (n = 30) and propranolol (n = 29). At 1 month of treatment, decrease in heart rate, mean arterial blood pressure (MAP) and HVPG was significant within each group (p = 0.001). Percentage decrease in MAP was significantly more in carvedilol group as compared to propranolol group (p = 0.04). Number of HVPG responders (HVPG decrease >20 % or below 12 mmHg) was significantly more in carvedilol group (22/29) as compared to propranolol group (14/28), p = 0.04.
Carvedilol is more effective in reducing portal pressure in patients with cirrhosis with esophageal bleed. Though a larger study is required to substantiate this, the results in this study are promising for carvedilol. Clinical trials online government registry (CTRI/2013/10/004119). Trial registration number CTRI/2013/10/004119.