Proton pump inhibitors use and risk of developing spontaneous bacterial peritonitis in cirrhotic patients: A systematic review and meta-analysis

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Gut Pathogens


Background: Spontaneous bacterial peritonitis (SBP) is one of the most common infectious diseases in patients with cirrhosis and is associated with serious prognosis. A prevailing dogma posits that SBP is exacerbated by the frequent use of proton pump inhibitors (PPIs). Aims: To re-assess the association between PPIs use and SBP incidence with larger and better-quality data. Method: The studies were identified by searching Proquest, Medline, and Embase for English language articles published between January 2008 and March 2020 using the following keywords alone or in combination: anti-ulcer agent, antacid, proton pump inhibitor, proton pumps, PPI, omeprazole, rabeprazole, lansoprazole, pantoprazole, esomeprazole, peritonitis, spontaneous bacterial peritonitis, SBP, ascites, cirrhosis, ascitic and cirrhotic. Three authors critically reviewed all of the studies retrieved and selected those judged to be the most relevant. Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) statement was followed. Pooled odds ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were calculated. Sub-group analyses were done to decrease the heterogeneity. Results: A total of twenty-three studies: seven case–control, and sixteen cohorts, involving 10,386 patients were analyzed. The overall results showed a statistically significant association between SBP and PPIs use (pooled odds ratio (OR): 1.80, 95% CI of 1.41 to 2.31). Substantial heterogeneity was observed. On subgroup analysis involving cohort studies, the association was weaker (OR: 1.55 with 95% CI of 1.16 to 2.06 p < 0.00001) but still statistically significant and with high heterogeneity (Chi p = 57.68; I = 74%). For case–control studies, the OR was 2.62 with a 95% CI of 1.94 to 3.54. The funnel plot was asymmetric and Egger’s test confirmed asymmetry suggesting publication bias (intercept = − 0.05, SE = 0.27, P = 0.850 two-tailed). Conclusion: This meta-analysis sheds light on the conflicting results raised by previous studies regarding the association of SBP with PPIs use. Our meta-analysis showed that there is a weak association, although statistically significant, between SBP and PPIs use. However, the magnitude of the possible association diminished when analysis focused on higher quality data that were more robust. Thus, this updated meta-analysis suggests judicious use of PPIs among cirrhotic patients with ascites. 2 2

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