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Expert Rev Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2017 Dec;11(12):1095-1104. doi: 10.1080/17474124.2017.1361822. Epub 2017 Aug 7.

Effects of antiviral therapy in patients with chronic hepatitis B and cirrhosis.

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a Department of Hepatology , Osaka City University Graduate School of Medicine , Osaka , Japan.
b Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology , Stanford University Medical Center , Palo Alto , CA , USA.


Hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection is the major cause of cirrhosis worldwide. The ultimate goal of current antiviral treatments for chronic hepatitis B (nucleos(t)ide analogs and interferon-α) is to prevent the development of end-stage liver diseases. Areas covered: We present a review of the current literature on antiviral therapy in patients with chronic hepatitis B and cirrhosis. Medline search was performed to identify relevant literature from 1993 through January of 2017. Expert commentary: One randomized controlled trial and a number of observational studies have shown that nucleos(t)ide analogs can decrease the incidence of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) in chronic hepatitis B patients with advanced fibrosis. Data from clinical trials of entecavir and tenofovir have shown that histological improvement and regression of fibrosis can be achieved in the majority of patients with chronic hepatitis B by successful viral suppression. Entecavir and tenofovir are the preferred antiviral agents for treatment of chronic hepatitis B in patients with cirrhosis due to their high antiviral potency and high genetic barrier to resistance. Pegylated interferon-α is another therapeutic option for chronic hepatitis B patients with well-compensated cirrhosis. However, interferon therapy is contraindicated in patients with decompensated cirrhosis, and evidence for reduced HCC is currently insufficient.


Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC); entecavir; fibrosis; interferon-α; nucleos(t)ide analogs; tenofovir

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