OBJECTIVE: To compare the serological, radiological and biochemical profile of cirrhotic patients with and without varices.
DESIGN AND DURATION: Two year cross sectional study started on 1st January 2010.
METHODOLOGY: The study was started after taking informed written consent from 739 participants. All patients underwent endoscopic and ultrasonological evaluation. Blood samples were drawn to detect the viral serology of patient, liver function test, international normalized ratio and platelet count. Categorical response variables were compared in patients with and without varices by chi square test and numerical response variable by t – test. P value of less than 0.05 was considered statistically significant.
RESULTS: Patients with varices had spleen size (< 0.001) of 15.58 ± 2.74 cms and portal vein diameter (p < 0.001) of 13.60 ± 2.25 mms. Ascites was documented in 231 (82.8%) patients. There was no statistically significant serological difference in patients with and without varices. Patients with varices had elevated INR (p < 0.001) (OR, 16.89 (95% CI: 10.97 – 25.99)), low albumin (p < 0.001) (OR, 4.70 (95% CI: 3.08 – 7.17)) and high bilirubin (p < 0.001) (OR, 1.87 (95% CI: 1.34 – 2.60)). The mean platelet count of patients with varices was 93502 ± 51195 as compared to 166783 ± 61181 with p < 0.001.
CONCLUSION: Patients of esophageal varices had biochemical and radiological features of advanced liver disease. There was no difference in viral serology of patients with and without varices.
Key words: Cirrhosis, varices, splenomegaly.