l-Ornithine-l-aspartate in the management of hepatic encephalopathy: A meta-analysis.Jiang Q, Jiang XH, Zheng MH, Chen YP. J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2008 Sep 24. [Epub ahead of print] Abstract Background and Aim: Hepatic encephalopathy continues to be a major clinical problem and the current decade has not witnessed major therapeutic breakthroughs in this area. l-ornithine-l-aspartate (LOLA) is not frequently used as there are still some reservations about its benefits. The present study aimed to assess the effectiveness and safety of LOLA in the management of hepatic encephalopathy. Methods: We used the method recommended by the Cochrane Collaboration to perform a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials of LOLA therapy for hepatic encephalopathy including three randomized controlled trials. Results: Three randomized trials randomizing 212 patients were included. LOLA versus placebo had a significant effect on improvement of hepatic encephalopathy (relative risk 1.89; 95% CI 1.32 to 2.71; P = 0.0005). This comparison showed no statistical heterogeneity (P = 0.85 and chi(2) = 0.09). Subgroup analysis showed that LOLA could be effective versus placebo in trials with grade I or II overt hepatic encephalopathy patients (relative risk 1.87; 95% CI 1.30 to 2.68; P = 0.0007) and had no significant effect in trials with subclinical hepatic encephalopathy patients (relative risk 1.69; 95% CI 0.72 to 3.94; P = 0.23). Adverse effects were observed in only three patients treated with LOLA in one report. Conclusions: LOLA benefited patients with overt hepatic encephalopathy (I or II), whereas these data do not support the use of LOLA for patients with subclinical hepatic encephalopathy.