BACKGROUND/AIMS: Liver function can be evaluated using 13C breath tests that explore liver Cytochrome P450 activity. Aminopyrine is one of the first compounds used in liver function testing. Lidocaine metabolism to monoethylglycinexylidide is also a valid tool to assess liver function. Although liver Cytochrome P450 metabolizes both compounds, lidocaine metabolism is flow-dependent while aminopyrine metabolism does not depend on liver blood flow. METHODOLOGY: The 1st part of the study evaluated the appearance and disappearance rate of 13CO2 in the breath of both normal subjects and in cirrhotic patients, so as to establish optimal sampling times and to evaluate the amount of time needed before performing a subsequent breath test. The 2nd part of the study compared the aminopyrine breath test with the monoethylglycinexylidide test in patients with chronic hepatitis or cirrhosis. RESULTS: Complete 13CO2 disappearance was recorded 24 hours after the test in normal subjects, while it took 3 days to disappear from the breath of cirrhotic patients. Breath sampling at 60, 120 and 180 min were equally valid in differentiating chronic hepatitis from cirrhosis. The aminopyrine breath test and monoethylglycinexylidide test showed a good yet not close correlation. CONCLUSIONS: This study showed that in cirrhotic patients a 13C breath test can be performed 3 days after the previous one. In chronic hepatitis and cirrhotic patients, the aminopyrine breath test and the monoethylglycinexylidide test evaluated similar, but not identical, hepatic subfunctions, suggesting that multiple 13C breath test using different substrates could explore liver function better.
|Number of pages||5|
|Publication status||Published - 2000|
- Breath test
- Liver function
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