Gender-Specific Risk Factors Contributing to Mortality in Patients Hospitalized With Alcoholic Cirrhosis

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Cureus. 2021 Jul 8;13(7):e16271. doi: 10.7759/cureus.16271. eCollection 2021 Jul.


Introduction Identification of gender-specific prognostic factors in patients with alcoholic liver cirrhosis (ALC) is integral to understanding disease severity and mortality rates. We gathered data on various widely-used laboratory values and comorbid conditions among male and female patients with ALC after initial hospitalization. These individual risk factors were assessed for their relationship with mortality based on gender. Methods We performed a retrospective observational study of hospitalized patients with either a new or prior diagnosis of ALC from 2008 to 2016 with follow-up through June 2018. The electronic medical record (EMR) was queried for demographics, comorbidities, lab values, and mortality. The cumulative risks of mortality after the first hospitalization were estimated using Kaplan-Meier curves and compared among both genders. Demographic data, lab values, and comorbidities associated with cirrhosis were assessed using multivariate Cox proportional hazard analysis to determine risk factors associated with mortality. Results We identified 247 male patients (mean age 54.19 ± 13.14 years) and 78 female patients (mean age 51.10 ± 11.60 years) hospitalized at Carilion Clinic with a diagnosis of ALC. About 70% (male) and 46% (female) endorsed alcohol use at the time of admission, 10% (male) and 13% (female) endorsed illicit drug use, and 56% (male and female) endorsed tobacco use. The one-, three- and five-year cumulative mortality after the first hospitalization was 43.4%, 53.2%, and 61.6%, respectively for males and 24.1%, 59.0%, and 67.2%, respectively for females. Median survival for younger male patients with ALC (age < 40 years old) after the first hospitalization was significantly different compared to the older male patients (age > 40 years) (p=0.0009), but age was not a significant factor for survival of female patients. Multivariate analysis further shows that illicit drug use, creatinine level at the time of admission, and age > 40 years had the highest hazard ratios for risk of mortality in male patients. For female patients, history of hepatic encephalopathy (HE) and blood urea nitrogen (BUN) level at the time of discharge were both associated with increased risk of mortality, with a history of HE being associated with a higher hazard ratio for risk of mortality. Conclusion Age, illicit drug use, and creatinine level were risk factors associated with mortality for male patients with ALC but not female patients. Hepatic encephalopathy and BUN were risk factors associated with mortality for female patients. The mortality for male patients was about twice the mortality of female patients at one year, but three-year and five-year mortality was higher in female patients.

PMID:34377607 | PMC:PMC8349303 | DOI:10.7759/cureus.16271

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