Background: MELD score and MELD score derivates are used to objectify and grade the risk of liver-related death in patients with liver cirrhosis. We recently proposed a new predictive model that combines serum creatinine levels and maximum liver function capacity (LiMAx®), namely the CreLiMAx risk score. In this validation study we have aimed to reproduce its diagnostic accuracy in patients with end-stage liver disease.
Methods: Liver function of 113 patients with liver cirrhosis was prospectively investigated. Primary end-point of the study was liver-related death within 12 months of follow-up.
Results: Alcoholic liver disease was the main cause of liver disease (n = 51; 45%). Within 12 months of follow-up 11 patients (9.7%) underwent liver transplantation and 17 (15.1%) died (13 deaths were related to liver disease, two not). Measures of diagnostic accuracy were comparable for MELD, MELD-Na and the CreLiMAx risk score as to power in predicting short and medium-term mortality risk in the overall cohort: AUROCS for liver related risk of death were for MELD [6 months 0.89 (95% CI 0.80–0.98) p < 0.001; 12 months 0.89 (95% CI 0.81–0.96) p < 0.001]; MELD-Na [6 months 0.93 (95% CI 0.85–1.00) p < 0.001 and 12 months 0.89 (95% CI 0.80–0.98) p < 0.001]; CPS 6 months 0.91 (95% CI 0.85–0.97) p < 0.01 and 12 months 0.88 (95% CI 0.80–0.96) p < 0.001] and CreLiMAx score [6 months 0.80 (95% CI 0.67–0.96) p < 0.01 and 12 months 0.79 (95% CI 0.64–0.94) p = 0.001]. In a subgroup analysis of patients with Child-Pugh Class B cirrhosis, the CreLiMAx risk score remained the only parameter significantly differing in non-survivors and survivors. Furthermore, in these patients the proposed score had a good predictive performance.
Conclusion: The CreLiMAx risk score appears to be a competitive and valid tool for estimating not only short- but also medium-term survival of patients with end-stage liver disease. Particularly in patients with Child-Pugh Class B cirrhosis the new score showed a good ability to identify patients not at risk of death.