Portal vein thrombosis is commonly associated with cirrhosis. The effect of alcoholic cirrhosis on portal vein thrombosis prevalence and mortality has not been well studied.
We conducted a retrospective cohort study utilizing the 2000–2014 National Inpatient Sample Database. We included patients older than 18 years with decompensated cirrhosis without a history of liver transplantation or hepatocellular carcinoma. We further identified patients with alcoholic cirrhosis vs. non-alcoholic cirrhosis. Primary outcomes included the risk and mortality of portal vein thrombosis in alcoholic cirrhosis. Secondary outcomes included trends of portal vein thrombosis prevalence and mortality in alcoholic cirrhosis, implications of portal vein thrombosis on complications in alcoholic cirrhosis vs. non-alcoholic cirrhosis, and risk of venous thromboembolism in alcoholic cirrhosis.
Among 1 892 271 patients with decompensated alcoholic cirrhosis, portal vein thrombosis prevalence was 1.3%. Alcoholic cirrhosis was associated with lower risk of portal vein thrombosis (odds ratio 0.76, P < 0.001) and venous thromboembolism (odds ratio 0.69, P < 0.001) compared to non-alcoholic cirrhosis. Portal vein thrombosis contributed to increased mortality (odds ratio 1.19, P < 0.001) in alcoholic cirrhosis. Portal vein thrombosis prevalence among alcoholic cirrhosis increased while mortality declined during the study period.
Thrombotic events including portal vein thrombosis and venous thromboembolism were found in less frequent association with alcoholic cirrhosis compared with non-alcoholic cirrhosis. Despite this, the higher in-hospital mortality found among portal vein thrombosis with alcoholic cirrhosis should prompt careful consideration of management.