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Jpn J Cancer Res. 1999 Feb;90(2):162-70.

Effects of continuous hepatitis with persistent hepatitis C viremia on outcome after resection of hepatocellular carcinoma.

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Second Department of Surgery, Osaka City University Medical School.


The effect of persistent hepatitis C viremia on the outcome after resection of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) was investigated in 59 consecutive patients with a single small HCC (< or = 3.0 cm in diameter). The presence of serum hepatitis C virus (HCV) RNA was evaluated using a reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction method as well as a branched DNA probe method. Clinicopathologic findings were compared between patients with and without viremia and the risk factors for poor outcome were evaluated. Hepatitis C virus (HCV) RNA was not detected in the sera from 7 patients (group 1), but was detected in the sera from the other 52 patients (group 2). Alanine aminotransferase (ALT) activity was significantly higher in group 2 than in group 1. The proportion of patients with active hepatitis was significantly higher in group 2. In group 2, new HCC often developed after the operation and four patients died of liver dysfunction. HCV viremia, high ALT activity, high concentration of total bilirubin, and liver cirrhosis were related to recurrence after the operation. Multivariate analysis indicated that HCV viremia and high ALT activity were independent risk factors for recurrence of HCC. Continuous hepatitis with persistent HCV viremia worsened the outcome after the resection of HCC by causing new development of HCC and deterioration of liver function. In patients with HCV-related HCC, but without HCV viremia, satisfactory results can be expected after liver resection.

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