Terlipressin for the treatment of hepatorenal syndrome: an overview of current evidence

Hepatorenal syndrome (HRS) is a serious complication of liver cirrhosis, which is of pre-renal origin due to central volume depletion together with cardiac dysfunction and characterized by oliguria with severe urinary sodium retention and elevated serum creatinine levels. HRS is divided into HRS I, which is rapidly progressive and mostly seen in patients with decompensated liver cirrhosis, and HRS II, which progresses more slowly and is always accompanied by gross ascites. Liver transplantation is the best choice of treatment for HRS but rarely available. Current mainstay pharmacological therapies are vasoconstrictors, such as terlipressin, noradrenaline and dopamine, in combination with albumin. This paper aims to overview the current evidence regarding outcomes of terlipressin for the treatment of HRS.