Introduction: Little is known about the long-term outcome of cirrhotic patients with splanchnic vein thrombosis (SVT). This prospective cohort study aimed to describe the clinical presentation, bleeding incidence, thrombotic events, and mortality in patients with SVT associated with cirrhosis. Methods: Among 604 consecutive patients with SVT enrolled over 2 years, 149 had cirrhosis. Major bleeding, thrombotic events, and all-cause mortality were recorded during a 2-year follow-up. In a subgroup, the degree of recanalization with or without anticoagulation therapy, and the correlation between clinical events and liver disease severity were also investigated. Results: The most common thrombosis sites were the portal (88%) and mesenteric veins (34%). At presentation, 50% of patients were asymptomatic. Anticoagulation was administered to 92/149 patients for a median of 6.5 months. Vessel recanalization was documented in 47/98 patients with a radiological follow-up. Anticoagulation was associated with a 3.33-fold higher of recanalization rate, and a lower recurrent thrombosis rate, while patients with and without anticoagulation experienced a similar rate of major bleeding episodes. Mortality rates were 6.8 per 100 patient-years for patients with thrombosis completely or partially resolving during the follow-up, and 15.4 per 100 patient-years for those with stable or progressing thrombosis. An impact of SVT on survival was only apparent in patients with more advanced liver disease (Child–Pugh B-C). Conclusions: Patients with SVT and cirrhosis have a substantial long-term risk of recurrent thrombotic events, which is reduced by anticoagulation therapy without any increase in bleeding risk. Anticoagulation can improve the likelihood of vessel recanalization, and is associated with a lower risk of death for decompensated patients.
ASJC Scopus subject areas