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Clin Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2010 Nov;8(11):924-33; quiz e117. doi: 10.1016/j.cgh.2010.06.032. Epub 2010 Aug 14.

Prevalence and challenges of liver diseases in patients with chronic hepatitis C virus infection.

Author information

1
Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology and Center for Study of Hepatitis C, Joan and Sanford I. Weill Medical College of Cornell University, New York, New York 10021, USA. imj2001@med.cornell.edu

Abstract

Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infections pose a growing challenge to health care systems. Although chronic HCV infection begins as an asymptomatic condition with few short-term effects, it can progress to cirrhosis, hepatic decompensation, hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), and death. The rate of new HCV infections is decreasing, yet the number of infected people with complications of the disease is increasing. In the United States, people born between 1945 and 1964 (baby boomers) are developing more complications of infection. Men and African Americans have a higher prevalence of HCV infection. Progression of fibrosis can be accelerated by factors such as older age, duration of HCV infection, sex, and alcohol intake. Furthermore, insulin resistance can cause hepatic steatosis and is associated with fibrosis progression and inflammation. If more effective therapies are not adopted for HCV, more than 1 million patients could develop HCV-related cirrhosis, hepatic decompensation, or HCC by 2020, which will impact the US health care system. It is important to recognize the impact of HCV on liver disease progression and apply new therapeutic strategies.

PMID:
20713178
DOI:
10.1016/j.cgh.2010.06.032
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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