Improving the Management of Hepatorenal Syndrome-Acute Kidney Injury Using an Updated Guidance and a New Treatment Paradigm

Gastroenterol Hepatol (N Y). 2023 Sep;19(9):527-536.


Cirrhosis, or advanced scarring of the liver, represents the end stage of chronic liver disease and is associated with high morbidity and mortality. Hepatorenal syndrome-acute kidney injury (HRS -AKI), a condition causing functional and progressive kidney failure, is a complication of cirrhosis that contributes to its high mortality rate. In the United States, the standard-of-care treatments for HRS -AKI have historically been suboptimal. Recently, terlipressin became the first drug approved for HRS -AKI in the United States, and the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases updated its guidance document on HRS diagnosis and management. Clinical practice guidelines and guidance documents have a variable effect on physician behavior owing to a lack of awareness, familiarity, and education. The imple mentation of standardized order sets can improve guidance adherence and the quality of care delivered by encouraging data-driven treatment administration, especially for new therapies. This review seeks to facilitate improvements in the management of HRS -AKI by discussing early HRS -AKI interventions, which will streamline diagnosis and treatment in a practical way for clinical use, and how to incorporate new treatments into patient care to improve survival in this subset of patients. Finally, these recommendations are integrated into a sample order set developed by members of the Chronic Liver Disease Foundation and experts in the management of HRS-AKI.

Keywords: Cirrhosis; diagnosis; hepatorenal syndrome–acute kidney injury; terlipressin; treatment.