Key words Hepatitis B
Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Abstract Development of resistance is a major issue in antiviral treatment of hepatitis B reinfection after liver transplantation. Antiviral combination therapy is discussed for therapy or prevention of this breakthrough of viral replication. Eight patients were enrolled into this retrospective analysis after liver transplantation for chronic hepatitis B infection. All had reinfection of the graft and breakthrough of HBV during consecutive famciclovir and lamivudine monotherapy. Subsequently a combination therapy with lamivudine and interferon-α 2 a (group I, n = 4) or lamivudine and famciclovir (group II, n = 4) was initiated. Combination therapy was started 61 months (group I) and 25 months (group II) after liver transplantation. It markedly reduced the viral replication rate in all patients despite lamivudine resistance. In group I three of four patients and in group II two of four patients became HBV-DNA negative. Two long-term responders were observed in group I, and none in group II. No patient became HBsAg negative or lost HbeAg. Pretreatment elevated ALT and AST levels were significantly reduced. No severe complications, and especially no rejection episodes, occurred. Lamivudine in combination with other antiviral agents, especially interferon-α, might be a therapeutic option for hepatitis B reinfection after liver transplantation. Suppression of virus replication to the point of undetectable values is possible even in patients with lamivudine-resistant virus mutations.
Type of Medium: