Sleep and Rhythms Projects

Overt Hepatic Encephalopathy: More Than Meets the Eye

Erminelli D, Mangini C, Zarantonello L, Angeli P, Montagnese S

Am J Gastroenterol

Introduction: We aimed to assess the reliability of a qualitative approach to overt hepatic encephalopathy (OHE) diagnosis compared with the semiquantitative, and recommended one.

Methods: The above 2 methods were compared in 411 outpatients (71% males, 60 ± 10 years, model for end-stage liver disease 13.5 ± 5.0).

Results: Of the 73 patients with OHE on quantitative assessment, 19 (26%) were missed on qualitative assessment, with no difference in the likelihood of the physician missing grades II or III. Sixty-eight (20%) of the 270 patients with no OHE on quantitative assessment were wrongly qualified as having OHE.

Discussion: Qualitative clinical evaluation of OHE is not reliable, and recommendations should be followed.

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