Albumin Dialysis

Role of the molecular adsorbent recycling system (MARS) in the treatment of patients with acute exacerbation of chronic liver failure.

Sorkine P, Ben Abraham R, Szold O, Biderman P, Kidron A, Merchav H, Brill S, Oren R
Crit Care Med 2001; 29: 1332–6


OBJECTIVE: To test the efficacy of the molecular adsorbent recycling system (MARS) in patients with acute exacerbation of chronic liver disease. DESIGN: A prospective case analysis. SETTING: A university-affiliated tertiary medical center. PATIENTS AND METHODS: We applied MARS to treat a consecutive series of eight patients with acute exacerbation of chronic liver disease. RESULTS: The overall survival rate was 62.5%. All patients demonstrated improvement with regard to their degree of encephalopathy. In three patients, intracranial pressure and jugular bulb oxygen saturation decreased and cerebral perfusion pressure increased after treatment institution. Patients' hyperdynamic state was attenuated, as demonstrated by elevation of systemic vascular resistance, mean arterial pressure, and parallel reduction in cardiac index. A prompt reduction in serum ammonia, bilirubin, and lactate levels was observed. There were no complications during the treatment period. CONCLUSIONS: Applying MARS treatments to patients with acute exacerbation of chronic liver disease can detoxify blood, improve cerebral circulation, and reduce brain edema, as reflected by the reduction in intracranial pressure and jugular bulb oxygen saturation values in our patients. A partial reversal of the characteristic hyperdynamic circulation was also achieved. Despite our encouraging results, further testing is needed to determine the reliability of the system.