To determine the clinical outcome of chronic hepatitis B cirrhotics on antiviral therapy.
The long-term outcome of hepatitis B cirrhotics on therapy remains to be characterized.
A large clinic cohort of chronic hepatitis B cirrhotic patients were enrolled in a treatment program of lamivudine±adefovir therapy. Patients were analyzed for clinical outcomes, and predictors of these outcomes were evaluated by multivariate analysis. Clinical outcomes of ascites, encephalopathy, hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), and progression in Child-Pugh score, Model for End-stage Liver Disease score, and mortality were assessed. Data were analyzed by Kaplan-Meier graphs, log-rank test, and Cox regression.
Of 143 chronic hepatitis B cirrhotics, 19.6% had decompensated cirrhosis. At 5 years, the mean survival was 83.6%, development of ascites, HCC, encephalopathy, and deterioration in Child-Pugh score were 7.0%, 15.9%, 10.8%, and 16.9%, respectively. The overall progression of liver-related complications was 32.8% at 5 years. Multivariate analysis showed that ascites, albumin ≤28 g/L, Child-Pugh score ≥7.9, Model for End-stage Liver Disease score ≥10.9 were significantly associated with liver-related complications. Low albumin and low hepatitis B virus DNA were independent factors for liver-associated mortality. Lamivudine resistance did not affect mortality or liver disease progression. When stratified by Child-Pugh status, the mean survival of those with Child C cirrhosis was worse than Child A and B cirrhosis (P<0.001, log-rank test). Early deaths (≤12 mo) were due to liver failure or sepsis, whereas deaths ≥12 mo were mainly due to HCC.
Decompensated chronic hepatitis B cirrhotics may suffer early mortality despite antiviral treatment, and therefore should be considered for early liver transplantation.