Pulmonary function tests in cirrhotic and non-cirrhotic portal hypertension.

A. Nagral, V. P. Kolhatkar, S. J. Bhatia, V. S. Taskar, P. Abraham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE: To determine pulmonary functions in portal hypertension of different etiologies and with various grades of ascites. SETTING: Gastrointestinal clinic in a large community based and secondary referral hospital. PATIENTS AND METHODS: Forty five patients with portal hypertension, including 19 cirrhotics with tense ascites, 8 with moderate ascites, 6 with no ascites and 12 patients with non-cirrhotic portal hypertension. All patients underwent basal pulmonary function testing by spirometry and helium dilution technique, and arterial blood gas estimation and measurement of ascitic fluid pressure. Patients with tense ascites underwent paracentesis of up to 2 liters following which ascitic fluid pressure and pulmonary functions were estimated again. MAIN RESULTS: In cirrhotic patients without ascites, FVC (forced vital capacity), RV (residual volume), TLC (total lung capacity) and FRC (functional residual capacity) were lower than predicted values. In patients with ascites, FVC, FEV1 (forced expired volume in one second) and FEF25-75 (forced expired volume in one second) and FEF25-75 (forced expiratory flow rate between 25% and 75% of forced vital capacity) were significantly lower as compared to predicted values. FVC, FEV1, FEF25-75, pO2, pCO2 and SaO2% decreased significantly with increasing ascites. Paracentesis in patients with tense ascites led to clinical improvement and significantly improved lung volumes. CONCLUSIONS: Pulmonary functions are impaired in patients with cirrhosis, and ascites causes further deterioration. Patients with non-cirrhotic portal hypertension have normal pulmonary functions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)36-40
Number of pages5
JournalIndian journal of gastroenterology : official journal of the Indian Society of Gastroenterology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1993
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology


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