Chronic Hepatitis B infection leads to development of hepatocellular carcinoma, but the effects of treatment in preventing hepatocellular carcinoma are not clear.
Dr Sung and colleagues from China studied the effects of interferon or nucleoside analogue on the risk of developing hepatocellular carcinoma in chronic Hepatitis B patients.
Randomized trials, case–control and cohort studies were retrieved from 5 electronic databases and international conferences over the past 10 years.
Relative risks of hepatocellular carcinoma with or without treatment were studied.
|The risk of hepatocellular carcinoma after treatment was reduced by 78%|
|Alimentary Pharmacology & Therapeutics|
The research team identified 12 studies involving 2742 patients treated by interferon vs control showed that the risk of hepatocellular carcinoma after treatment was reduced by 34%.
Benefit is more significant among patients with early cirrhosis than among those without cirrhosis.
The team noted that 5 studies involving 2289 patients compared patients treated by nucleoside analogue with control.
The risk of hepatocellular carcinoma after treatment was reduced by 78%.
Hepatitis B e antigen-positive patients showed more significantly reduced hepatocellular carcinoma risk with treatment.
Patients without cirrhosis benefited more from nucleoside analogue than those with cirrhosis.
The research team noted that resistance to nucleoside analogue has obviated the benefit of the treatment.
Dr Sung’s team commented, “Interferon or nucleoside analogue treatment significantly reduces risk of hepatocellular carcinoma.”
“While interferon benefited patients with cirrhosis, nucleoside analogue benefited patients with no cirrhosis and Hepatitis B e antigen-positive chronic Hepatitis B infection.”