Impact of high-dose glucocorticoid on endothelial damage after liver resection - a double-blinded randomized substudy


OBJECTIVES: Postoperative endothelial damage potentially results in increased vascular leakage, tissue edema and subsequent complications. The preventive effect of glucocorticoids on endothelial damage after surgery is sparsely described, including the relation between endothelial damage and the postoperative inflammatory response. Thus, we aimed to assess the preventive effect of high-dose glucocorticoids on postoperative endothelial damage, and the association between endothelial damage and inflammation after surgery.

METHODS: This was a predefined substudy of a randomized double-blinded clinical trial of methylprednisolone 10 mg/kg (high dose) vs. dexamethasone 8 mg (low dose) in patients undergoing liver resection at Rigshospitalet, Copenhagen. In total 25 patients undergoing major liver resection (11 in the high-dose group and 14 in the low-dose group) were included. The primary outcome was changed in five endothelial biomarkers and the secondary outcome was changes in inflammation [C-reactive protein (CRP)] for the first three postoperative days.

RESULTS: No statistically significant difference was found for any endothelial biomarkers postoperatively between the two groups (P > 0.15, for all). High-dose glucocorticoids significantly reduced CRP on day 3 compared to low-dose glucocorticoids [median difference on a postoperative day 3, 59.6 g/L, (84.2; 27.1), P < 0.002]. No significant correlation between endothelial damage and CRP levels was seen.

CONCLUSIONS: No significant effect of high- vs. low-dose glucocorticoids on development in endothelial biomarkers after major liver resection was observed. High-dose glucocorticoids reduce the inflammatory response though without correlation to endothelial damage. Future studies should assess the clinical impact of increased endothelial biomarkers for clinical perioperative outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
JournalEuropean journal of gastroenterology & hepatology
Issue number11
Pages (from-to)1178-1186
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - 2022


  • Biomarkers
  • C-Reactive Protein/metabolism
  • Dexamethasone
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Glucocorticoids/adverse effects
  • Humans
  • Inflammation
  • Liver/metabolism
  • Methylprednisolone
  • endothelium
  • vascular
  • inflammation
  • glucocorticoids


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