Author(s): Lin TJ, Liao LY, Lin CL, Chang TA, Liu SO
Abstract Share this page
Abstract BACKGROUND/AIMS: Mild to moderate iron overload is common in chronic hepatitis C (CHC) and may influence the response to antiviral therapy. The aim of this study was to assess the association among serum iron indices, hepatic iron stores and sustained virological response (SVR) rates of combination therapy with peginterferon alfa and ribavirin in patients with CHC. METHODOLOGY: A total of 36 CHC patients were treated with peginterferon and ribavirin for 6 months. The SVR was defined as undetectable hepatitis C virus RNA by qualitative assay 6 months after the end of therapy. The serum iron indices including ferritin, iron and transferrin saturation were measured. The hepatic iron deposition was graded on Perls' stain. RESULTS: The SVR was obtained in 25/36 (69.44\%) patients. The serum iron indices including transferrin saturation and ferritin were not significantly different between patients with the SVR and without. In multivariate logistic regression analysis, cirrhosis (P = 0.010, odds ratio = 0.020) and a positive hepatic iron stain (P = 0.046, odds ratio = 0.065) were both significantly independent predictors of non-SVR. CONCLUSIONS: The findings suggest that the positive hepatic iron stain is an independent predictor of non-response to combination therapy with peginterferon alfa and ribavirin for patients with CHC. Liver cirrhosis also predicts non-responses to the combination therapy.
This article was published in Hepatogastroenterology
and referenced in Journal of Clinical & Experimental Pharmacology