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Background: Albumin therapy in patients with decompensated liver cirrhosis has always been a controversial issue. This study aimed to investigate the efficacy and safety of albumin in reducing mortality and controlling complications in patients with liver cirrhosis and provide a reference for relevant decision-making.

Methods: Databases such as PubMed, EMBASE, and Web of Science were searched to collect eligible articles published before January 2022, which were analyzed by Revman 5.3.

Results: A total of 10 randomized controlled trials (2040 patients) were included. Based on the meta-analysis results, no significant difference in mortality was shown between the albumin administration group and the control group (HR = 1.01; 95% CI, 0.97-1.05; P = 0.62). Subgroup analysis showed that albumin administration had no significant short-term or long-term survival benefits in patients with decompensated liver cirrhosis and increased the risk of pulmonary edema adverse reactions (RR = 3.14; 95% CI, 1.48-6.65; P = 0.003). Subgroup analysis based on albumin administration time showed that short-term (HR = 0.93; 95% CI, 0.76-1.13; P = 0.47) or long-term (HR = 0.97; 95% CI: 0.87-1.08; P = 0.58) administration of albumin could not significantly reduce the mortality of patients with decompensated liver cirrhosis. In contrast, albumin administration could significantly reduce the recurrence rate of ascites (RR = 0.56; 95% CI, 0.46-0.68; P = 0.000).

Conclusion: Short-term(<1 month) or long-term (>1 month) administration of albumin can not significantly reduce the mortality of patients with decompensated liver cirrhosis, and a large amount of albumin infusion will increase the risk of pulmonary edema.

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