Acad Emerg Med. 2020 Aug 6. doi: 10.1111/acem.14103. Online ahead of print.
Cirrhotic patients often develop bleeding from gastric or esophageal varices that occur secondary to portal hypertension. Gastrointestinal (GI) bleeding is fatal in approximately 20% of these episodes and bacterial infections are an important contributor to this mortality. Patients with cirrhosis are also known to have impaired immune function and also at higher risk of translocation of bacteria from the gut into the bloodstream.1 Therefore, the administration of prophylactic antibiotics during the bleeding event might help prevent such infections.