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News

Sustained viral response prolongs hepatocellular carcinoma survival

Interferon therapies before and after Hep C-associated hepatocellular carcinoma development prolongs survival when sustained virologic response is achieved, finds July's Liver International.

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Dr Masatoshi Akamatsu and colleagues from Japan evaluated interferon therapy in treating Hepatitis C virus-associated hepatocellular carcinoma.

The team of doctors compared overall and recurrence-free survival rates between 191 patients who received interferon therapy before hepatocellular carcinoma development.

Of these, 15 had sustained virologic response, and 53 received interferon therapy after hepatocellular carcinoma ablation.

The team noted that 17 of the 53 patients receiving interferon therapy had sustained virologic response.

A further 399 patients included as controls had hepatocellular carcinoma with Child-Pugh class A liver function.

The control patients did not receive interferon.

Sustained virologic response after hepatocellular carcinoma was 100% at 3 years
Liver International

The doctors found overall survival rate in the controls was 82%, 53%, and 28% at 3, 6, and 9 years, respectively.

Those who developed hepatocellular carcinoma after achieving sustained virologic response, the response rate was 93%, 93%, and 93%, respectively over that time.

The survival rate in those with hepatocellular carcinoma after non-sustained virologic response was 88%, 57%, and 36%, respectively.

The team found that sustained virologic response after hepatocellular carcinoma was 100%, 88%, and 60% at 3, 6, and 9 years.

Over the same time period, the non-sustained virologic response after hepatocellular carcinoma was 94%, 71%, and 53%, respectively.

Cox proportional hazard regression analysis revealed that the risk of death was reduced with hepatocellular carcinoma after sustained virologic response.

The doctors found that the risk ratio for hepatocellular carcinoma was 0.12.

The team noted that patients with sustained virologic response after hepatocellular carcinoma had with a risk ratio of 0.39 compared with the controls.

Improved survival was attributable mainly to sustained liver function among patients with sustained virologic response.

The doctors observed that recurrence-free survival did not differ significantly.

Dr Akamatsu's team concluded, “Interferon therapies before and after hepatocellular carcinoma development were both significantly associated with prolonged survival when sustained virologic response was achieved.”

Liver Internat 2006:26(5):536
03 July 2006

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