Cardiac damage in liver cirrhosis in alcohol abusers
Aim: To estimate the contribution of liver cirrhosis (LC) to the development of heart diseases in alcohol abusers. Subjects and methods: The investigation included 80 patients with alcoholic LC without a history of cardiovascular and respiratory diseases and, as a control group, 32 alcohol abusers without a history of chronic diseases of the liver and cardiovascular and respiratory systems; 45 patients with alcoholic cardiomyopathy (ACM) and congestive heart failure without a history of coronary heart disease and valvular diseases, among whom 11 patients were found to have LC. In addition to standard clinical examination, all the patients underwent electrocardiography, by estimating the corrected QT interval (QTc), standard echocardiography; and those without ACM underwent estimation of left ventricular (LV) kinetics using speckle-tracking echocardiography. Results: The patients with alcoholic LC were found to have a higher LV ejection fraction and a more obvious impairment of LV global longitudinal deformity, and more commonly LV diastolic dysfunction. 16 of the 80 patients with LC were observed to have moderate pulmonary hypertension while the mean pulmonary artery pressure (MPAP) was within the normal range in all the patients without LC. A prolonged QTc interval was revealed in the patients with LC. The duration of QTc was directly correlated with the MELD severity of LC. The patients with chronic heart failure in the presence of ACM and CL showed a more obvious LV diastolic dysfunction, as estimated by E/E', a greater LV mass index, and a higher MPAP than those with ACM without LC. Conclusion: The LC patients both with ACM and without a history of diseases of the heart were noted to have its more evident disorders as diastolic dysfunction and elevated MPAP. Those without ACM were observed to have impaired LV global deformity and a prolonged QTc interval.