Ascitis en el paciente cirrótico: ¿cómo abordarla?

Ismael Yepes Barreto, Sergio Cadavid Asís

DOI: https://doi.org/10.32997/rcb-2014-3030

Resumen

La ascitis es una de las complicaciones características de la cirrosis hepática descompensada. La paracentesis es importante para diagnóstico y orientación terapéutica. Se debe estimar gradiente albumina plasmática/líquido ascítico, ya que tiene sensibilidad del 97% para diagnosticar ascitis secundaria a hipertensión portal. El tratamiento inicial consiste en  administrar dieta hiposódica y diuréticos. La combinación de 400 mg/día de espironolactona y 160 mg/día de furosemida, son las dosis máximas aceptadas. La ascitis refractaria se presenta en el 10% de los pacientes con cirrosis hepática, y se define como la ausencia de respuesta a las medidas señaladas o como una ascitis rápidamente recurrente después de la paracentesis evacuadora. La ausencia de respuesta a los diuréticos se identifica por la ausencia de pérdida de peso junto a la inadecuada excreción de sodio, o por la presencia de encefalopatía, insuficiencia renal o hiperkalemia. En estos casos los pacientes se deben manejar con paracentesis periódicas, para las cuales se recomienda la reposición de albumina a 6 - 8 gramos por cada litro de líquido ascítico extraído. Cuando el volumen supera los 5 litros se debe realizar recuento de leucocitos con formula diferencial en el líquido ascítico, para descartar peritonitis
bacteriana espontánea. Las paracentesis periódicas no son recomendables en pacientes que responden adecuadamente a los diuréticos, tampoco cuando existe incremento en el riesgo de infecciones. La ascitis señala el inicio de una etapa más agresiva de la enfermedad y el trasplante hepático debe ser considerado de forma prioritaria, si no existen contraindicaciones. Rev.cienc.biomed. 2014;5(2):361-368.


Palabras clave

Cirrosis hepática; Ascitis; Insuficiencia hepática; Líquido ascítico.

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Referencias

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