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Hepatology. 1990 Feb;11(2):230-8.

Enhancement of portal pressure reduction by the association of isosorbide-5-mononitrate to propranolol administration in patients with cirrhosis.

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  • 1Hepatic Hemodynamics Laboratory, Liver Unit, Hospital Clinic i Provincial, University of Barcelona, Spain.


This study investigated whether oral doses of isosorbide-5-mononitrate, a preferential venous dilator that decreases portal pressure, could enhance the effects of propranolol on portal hypertension. Taking part in the study were 28 patients with cirrhosis and portal hypertension. Twenty patients (group 1) had hemodynamic measurements in baseline conditions after beta-blockade by intravenous administration of propranolol and after receiving oral doses of isosorbide-5-mononitrate. The remaining eight patients (group 2) were given oral isosorbide-5-mononitrate while receiving chronic propranolol therapy. In group 1, propranolol significantly reduced portal pressure (estimated as the gradient between wedged and free hepatic venous pressures) from 21.5 +/- 3.9 to 18.6 +/- 4.2 mm Hg (-13.7%, p less than 0.001), azygos blood flow (-38%, p less than 0.001), hepatic blood flow (-12.8%, p less than 0.05), cardiac output (-24.5%, p less than 0.001) and heart rate (-18.4%, p less than 0.001) without significant changes in mean arterial pressure. Addition of oral isosorbide-5-mononitrate caused a further and marked fall in portal pressure (to 15.7 +/- 3.1 mm Hg, p less than 0.001), without additional changes in azygos blood flow but with significant additional reductions in hepatic blood flow (-15.5%, p less than 0.05), cardiac output (-11.5%, p less than 0.001) and mean arterial pressure (-22%, p less than 0.001).(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

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