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Dig Dis Sci. 2011 Jan;56(1):208-12. doi: 10.1007/s10620-010-1255-9. Epub 2010 May 14.

Long-term effect of interferon therapy in patients with HBeAg positive chronic hepatitis B infection.

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  • 1Cerrahpasa Medical Faculty, Department of Gastroenterology, Istanbul University, and Department of Internal Medicine, Istanbul Education and Training Hospital, Istanbul, Turkey. drhakansenturk@yahoo.com

Abstract

INTRODUCTION:

Several studies have reported that interferon therapy increases elimination rate of HBeAg and anti-HBe seroconversion in chronic hepatitis B (CHB) patients. We aimed to evaluate long-term results of interferon-α treatment in HBeAg positive CHB patients in a country with exclusively D genotype.

METHODS:

Seventy-one naive CHB patients (M/F 61/10, mean age 29±12 years, range 16-62) treated with 6 months of interferon-α 2b, 10 MU tiw and had a consequent untreated follow-up period of at least 10 years with positive response were identified and their data were reviewed. The therapy response was defined as HBeAg seroconversion with undetectable HBV-DNA. The responders were followed-up at 3-6-month intervals.

RESULTS:

Twenty-eight (39%) patients achieved HBeAg seroconversion (25 within the therapy, 3 within the consequent 12 months off-treatment follow-up). The responders were followed-up with a mean period of 152 months (range 123-181). In the follow-up period, 21/25 (84%) initial responders relapsed. On the other hand, 3 patients who did not respond at the end of therapy sustained the response during follow-up. Hence 21/28 total responders relapsed (75%), either with HBeAg reversion (3, 14.3%) or HBV-DNA elevation over 2000 IU/ml (or its equivalent in other types of definitions) and ALT elevation (18, 85.7%). The sustained response was present in 7 patients (9.8%). Serious side effects precluding completion of treatment occurred in three patients (4.2%). In multivariate analysis none of the pre-treatment parameters appeared to be significant in predicting response.

CONCLUSION:

Sustained response to interferon treatment is low in HBeAg positive CHB patients with genotype D.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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