Nav: Home

Antiviral therapies give Hepatitis C cirrhosis patients similar life expectancy as general population

May 04, 2016

Amsterdam, The Netherlands, May 4, 2016 -- The survival rate of patients with hepatitis C virus-related cirrhosis who respond well to antiviral therapies equals that of the general population, say investigators in the Journal of Hepatology.

Long-term development of cirrhosis and liver disorders, such as decompensation or hepatocellular carcinoma, after infection with hepatitis C virus (HCV) still represents the main cause of death and liver transplantation in Western countries. Current international guidelines give the highest priority for treatment with new direct antiviral agents to HCV-infected individuals who have already developed cirrhosis. This recommendation is based on the favorable outcomes of cirrhotic patients who obtained sustained virologic response (SVR) after interferon-based therapies. However, concerns have been raised about whether the evidence on which this recommendation is based is sufficiently robust.

"The improved prognosis for patients who had a sustained virologic response has only been documented up to now by comparing patients who had such a response to interferon-based therapies with similar patients who were unsuccessfully treated, raising concerns about the real value of SVR as a reliable marker of disease outcome," explained lead investigator Savino Bruno, MD, of the Humanitas University and IRCCS Istituto Clinico Humanitas, Rozzano, Italy.

Investigators studied prospective surveillance data from three independent groups of Italian patients with compensated hepatitis C virus-related cirrhosis who underwent an interferon-based therapy in tertiary Liver Centres and achieved sustained virologic response (SVR), compared with simultaneously observed non-SVR, untreated, and decompensated patients. They excluded patients with non-cirrhotic advanced fibrosis.

Overall, 795 of 1,802 patients with HCV-related cirrhosis in the three groups received interferon-based antiviral therapy. A total of 181 patients achieved SVR. The survival of patients with HCV-compensated cirrhosis who achieved SVR was similar to that of the sex- and age-matched general population with a total of 28 deaths. The 10-year overall survival rate for the whole series was over 90% and the 20-year overall survival rate was 63%.

"These results confirm that patients who respond well to interferon-based therapies have a similar life expectancy to the general population, and suggest that treatment should be given as early as possible to patients with compensated HCV cirrhosis in order to achieve the highest benefit," commented Dr. Bruno. "Availability of interferon-free new direct antiviral agents (DAA) regimens will allow even sicker patients and those ineligible for interferon to achieve SVR, a major advance given that the mortality rate of these patients is extremely high in comparison to the general population. However, the overall impact of SVR needs to be assessed in further dedicated studies."
-end-


Elsevier Health Sciences

Related Hepatitis Articles:

Hepatitis C increasing among pregnant women
Hepatitis C infections among pregnant women nearly doubled from 2009-2014, likely a consequence of the country's increasing opioid epidemic that is disproportionately affecting rural areas of states including Tennessee and West Virginia.
WHO's Global Hepatitis Report sets baseline to eliminate viral hepatitis by 2030
The World Hepatitis Alliance today welcomes the publication of the first-ever Global Hepatitis Report by the World Health Organization (WHO), which includes new data on the prevalence and global burden of viral hepatitis.
Elimination of viral hepatitis by 2030: What's needed and how do we get there?
This first European Action Plan provides an important driver to aid countries in their fight against viral hepatitis, to which ECDC had the opportunity to contribute directly.
Discovery of new Hepatitis C virus mechanism
Researchers at Osaka University, Japan uncovered the mechanisms that suppress the propagation of the hepatitis C virus with the potential of improving pathological liver conditions.
Is Europe ready to eliminate viral hepatitis?
Currently, Europe records around 57,000 newly diagnosed acute and chronic cases of hepatitis B and C each year.
Why baby boomers need a hepatitis C screening
Hepatitis C affects a disproportionate amount of older Americans, born between 1945 and 1965.
Counterattack of the hepatitis B virus
The hepatitis B virus (HBV) infects liver cells. Drugs are available to treat HBV, but they rarely cure the infection, and so the virus typically returns after the treatment ends.
Hepatitis C tied to increased risk of Parkinson's
The hepatitis C virus may be associated with an increased risk of developing Parkinson's disease, according to a study published in the Dec.
The hepatitis A virus is of animal origin
The hepatitis A virus can trigger acute liver inflammation which generally has a mild course in small children but which can become dangerous in adults.
Modeling the helicase to understand hepatitis C
NS3 is an enzyme specific to the hepatitis C virus.

Related Hepatitis Reading:

Best Science Podcasts 2019

We have hand picked the best science podcasts for 2019. Sit back and enjoy new science podcasts updated daily from your favorite science news services and scientists.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Setbacks
Failure can feel lonely and final. But can we learn from failure, even reframe it, to feel more like a temporary setback? This hour, TED speakers on changing a crushing defeat into a stepping stone. Guests include entrepreneur Leticia Gasca, psychology professor Alison Ledgerwood, astronomer Phil Plait, former professional athlete Charly Haversat, and UPS training manager Jon Bowers.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#524 The Human Network
What does a network of humans look like and how does it work? How does information spread? How do decisions and opinions spread? What gets distorted as it moves through the network and why? This week we dig into the ins and outs of human networks with Matthew Jackson, Professor of Economics at Stanford University and author of the book "The Human Network: How Your Social Position Determines Your Power, Beliefs, and Behaviours".