Treatment with colchicine and survival of patients with ascitic cirrhosis: a double-blind randomized trial.
Adhami JE. Basho J.
University Medical Center of Tirana, Albania.
BACKGROUND: In order to assess the role of colchicine in the survival of cirrhotic patients, 52 patients were studied. METHODS: The patients were divided into two groups, randomized according to age. There were no significant differences in age, sex, etiologic factors, or biological data. In addition to conventional therapy with diuretics, the first group was treated with colchicine of 1 milligram daily for 5 days a week, and the second group with a placebo. RESULTS: Under the action of colchicine, the diuretics were discontinued because the ascites disappeared in 37.93% of the colchicine group, vs 4.35% of the placebo group (p < 0.01). At time of discharge from the clinic, ascitic fluid disappeared respectively in 72.41% and 26.09% of cases (p < 0.001), whereas the recurrence in the follow-up period was 47.62% vs 83.33% (p < 0.1). CONCLUSIONS: Using Kaplan Meier survival curves, and comparing both groups with Logrank test during a period of 11 years it was found that survival of the colchicine group was 3 times greater than that of the placebo group (p < 0.001).