Author(s): Al Ghumlas AK, Abdel Gader AG, Al Faleh FZ
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Abstract The liver plays a central role in haemostasis, being the site of synthesis of most of the clotting factors, coagulation inhibitors and fibrinolytic parameters, in addition to its clearance of activated clotting and fibrinolytic factors. Nonetheless, no haemostatic test(s) is included among the routine liver function tests and this study aims to probe this possibility. The liver disease group (n=258) included acute hepatitis (n=25), chronic viral hepatitis (n=128), hepatitis B (HB) carriers (n=25), liver cirrhosis (n=67), and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) (n=13). The prothrombin time was significantly prolonged in acute hepatitis, liver cirrhosis and HCC. However, the reptilase time was prolonged in all the groups except in HB carriers, while the thrombin time was prolonged only in the HCC group. Antithrombin III and protein C levels exhibited significant reduction in acute hepatitis, liver cirrhosis and HCC. On the other hand, protein S levels (total and free) were reduced significantly in all the patients groups, including HB carriers when compared with healthy controls. Derangement of haemostatic tests is a common feature in liver disease, being most significant in acute hepatitis, liver cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma. The most sensitive markers of hepatocyte malfunction are protein S (total and free) and the reptilase time as they were abnormal, in the mildest liver affections, when other biochemical tests as well as other haemostatic tests were normal. Further studies are needed to see whether these two tests qualify for inclusion among the routine liver function tests.
This article was published in Blood Coagul Fibrinolysis
and referenced in Journal of Anesthesia & Clinical Research