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PLoS One. 2014 Apr 3;9(4):e93443. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0093443. eCollection 2014.

No increased risk of herpes zoster found in cirrhotic patients: a nationwide population-based study in Taiwan.

Author information

1
Division of Nephrology, Department of Internal Medicine, Kaohsiung Medical University Hospital, Kaohsiung, Taiwan; Graduate Institute of Medicine, College of Medicine, Kaohsiung Medical University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan.
2
Department of Family Medicine, Kaohsiung Medical University Hospital, Kaohsiung, Taiwan.
3
Department of Pharmacy, Taipei Medical University-Wanfang Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan; Department of Clinical Pharmacy, School of Pharmacy, Taipei Medical University, Taipei, Taiwan.
4
Department of Healthcare Management, Yuanpei University, Hsinchu, Taiwan.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The association between liver cirrhosis (LC) and herpes zoster has rarely been studied. We investigated the hypothesis that LC, known as an immunodeficiency disease, may increase the risk of herpes zoster using a national health insurance database in Taiwan.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

The study cohort included cirrhotic patients between 1998 and 2005 (n = 4667), and a ratio of 1:5 randomly sampled age- and gender-matched control patients (n = 23,335). All subjects were followed up for 5 years from the date of cohort entry to identify whether or not they had developed herpes zoster. Cox proportional-hazard regressions were performed to evaluate 5-year herpes zoster-free survival rates.

RESULTS:

Of all patients, 523 patients developed herpes zoster during the 5-year follow-up period, among whom 82 were LC patients and 441 were in the comparison cohort. The adjusted hazard ratio (AHR) of herpes zoster in patients with LC was not higher (AHR: 0.77, 95% confidence interval: 0.59-1.01, p = 0.06) than that of the controls during the 5-year follow-up. No increased risk of herpes zoster was found in LC patients after stratification by age, gender, urbanization level, income, geographic region, and all comorbidities.

CONCLUSIONS:

This large nationwide population-based cohort study suggests that there is no increased risk for herpes zoster among people who have LC compared to a matching population.

PMID:
24699628
PMCID:
PMC3974756
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0093443
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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