Document Type : Brief Communication


1 Department of Emergency Medicine, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran.

2 Department of Emergency Medicine, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran


Spontaneous bacterial peritonitis (SBP) is a complication of liver cirrhosis with adverse effect on patient prognosis. Early diagnosis and treatment is highly important, especially in patients without remarkable manifestations. We designed this study to determine the prevalence of SBP among afebrile cirrhotic patients and identify high-risk subgroups in a referral center in southern Iran. This cross-sectional study evaluated all afebrile cirrhotic patients, admitted to the gastroenterology ward of Namazi hospital (affiliated with Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran) over a 6-month period in 2017, for the presence and correlates of SBP. Demographic data, clinical findings, and comorbidities were recorded. Ascitic fluid white blood cells (WBC) count >500 and neutrophil count >250 indicated bacterial peritonitis. In total, 97 afebrile cirrhotic patients comprising of 63 (64.9%) men and 34 (35.1%) women were included. All patients had ascites and 89 (91.8%) had abdominal tenderness. Accordingly, abdominal distension was the top presentation. Confirmed etiologies or comorbidities such as HBS, HCV, and liver cancer or metastasis existed in 46 patients. Thirteen (13.4%) had SBP. The correlations of gender (p=0.331), decreased level of consciousness (p=0.145), tenderness (p=0.315). With regards to the type of presentations, only DLOC showed to be significantly higher in SBP negative patients (p=0.022, OR=0.09. 95%CI=0.01–0.62). Also, using binary logistic regression, the correlation of age with SBP was statistically non-significant (coefficient= ⎼0.013, p=0.595). Our findings indicated that routine paracentesis in all cirrhotic patients regardless of fever can help diagnose a number of potentially neglected patients and improve their outcome.