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Determinants of the hyperdynamic circulation and central hypovolaemia in cirrhosis
  1. Søren Møller1,
  2. Lise Hobolth1,2,
  3. Christine Winkler1,3,
  4. Flemming Bendtsen2,
  5. Erik Christensen4
  1. 1Department of Clinical Physiology, Hvidovre Hospital, Hvidovre, Denmark
  2. 2Department of Gastroenterology, Hvidovre Hospital, Hvidovre, Denmark
  3. 3Department of Clinical Physiology and Nuclear Medicine, Rigshospitalet, Copenhagen, Denmark
  4. 4Department of Medical Gastroenterology I, Bispebjerg Hospital, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark
  1. Correspondence to Søren Møller, Department of Clinical Physiology and Nuclear Medicine, 239 Hvidovre Hospital, DK-2650 Hvidovre, Denmark; soeren.moeller{at}


Background Patients with advanced cirrhosis often develop a hyperdynamic circulation with central hypovolaemia. The events that initiate the systemic haemodynamic abnormalities and the coupling of these factors to splanchnic haemodynamics are still unclear.

Objective On the basis of a large population of patients with cirrhosis to identify splanchnic and clinical characteristics associated with the development of the hyperdynamic circulation and survival.

Methods We included 410 patients with cirrhosis. In all patients, a full haemodynamic investigation was performed. The data were analysed using regression analyses, principal components analyses, and Cox proportional hazards analyses.

Results Multivariate regression analyses showed that higher cardiac output was independently associated with higher hepatic venous pressure gradient (HVPG) and higher hepatic blood flow (HBF) (p<0.00001). Higher heart rate was independently associated with presence of ascites and higher HVPG (p<0.0001). Central blood volume and circulation time were independently associated with higher HBF and lower postsinusoidal resistance, respectively (p<0.0001). Systemic vascular resistance was independently associated with lower HVPG (p<0.0001). The final Cox proportional hazards model showed that decreased survival was independently associated with higher age (p=0.003), lower blood haemoglobin concentration (p=0.0006), higher plasma creatinine (p=0.01), higher plasma alkaline phosphatase (p=0.007), lower right atrial pressure (p=0.004), and higher heart rate (p=0.002).

Conclusion The development of the hyperdynamic circulation and central hypovolaemia are mainly explained by changes in portal pressure and HBF. Together with indicators of liver dysfunction, central hypovolaemia is associated with poorer prognosis.

  • Portal hypertension
  • liver dysfunction
  • central blood volume
  • hepatic blood flow
  • principal components analysis
  • cirrhosis
  • hepatic circulation
  • hepatic haemodynamics
  • liver failure
  • portal hypertension

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  • See Commentary, p 1167

  • Linked articles 242511.

  • Funding The study was supported by grants from the Lundbeck Foundation and the Hvidovre Hospital Research Foundation.

  • Competing interests None.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

  • Ethics approval This study was conducted with the approval of the Danish Data Protection Agency and Local Ethics Committee for Medical Research in Copenhagen, Denmark.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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