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Ann Intern Med. 2010 Jul 20;153(2):85-9. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-153-2-201007200-00257. Epub 2010 Jun 14.

Brief communication: case reports of ribavirin treatment for chronic hepatitis E.

Author information

1
Institut Cochin, Université Paris Descartes (Unité Mixte de Recherche S1016), Paris, France. vincent.mallet@cch.aphp.fr

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

There is currently no accepted treatment of chronic hepatitis E virus (HEV) infection.

OBJECTIVE:

To report 2 patients in whom ribavirin therapy seemed to alter the natural history of chronic HEV infection.

DESIGN:

Case reports.

SETTING:

Hepatology unit of a tertiary care center in France.

PATIENTS:

A kidney and pancreas transplant recipient and a patient with idiopathic CD4(+) T lymphocytopenia, both with biopsy-proven chronic HEV infection.

INTERVENTION:

Patients received oral ribavirin, 12 mg/kg of body weight daily for 12 weeks.

MEASUREMENTS:

Liver function tests, detection of HEV RNA (viremia and stool shedding) by reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction, and anti-HEV IgM and IgG antibodies.

RESULTS:

Both patients had normalized liver function test results after 2 weeks of treatment and cleared HEV after 4 weeks of treatment. Hepatitis E virus RNA remained undetectable in the serum and stools throughout follow-up (3 months and 2 months for the first and second patient, respectively). Side effects were considered mild.

LIMITATION:

Given the relatively short follow-up, the achievement of HEV eradication could not be claimed.

CONCLUSION:

Ribavirin is a potentially effective treatment of HEV infection and should be evaluated in patients with chronic HEV infection.

PRIMARY FUNDING SOURCE:

None.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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