Background: Most clinical trials of direct-acting antiviral (DAA) therapy for hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection have excluded hepatitis B virus (HBV) coinfection, and little is known about the effects of DAA on chronic hepatitis C patients with HBV coinfection. Recent studies have reported that DAA therapy for HCV can also cause HBV reactivation in patients with HBV and HCV coinfection. The aim of this study was to assess the effects of DAA on sustained virologic response (SVR) and HBV reactivation in patients with chronic hepatitis C. Methods: Participants comprised 199 chronic hepatitis C patients who received DAA therapy (96 men, 103 women; mean age, 66.7 ± 12.0 years). Results: Twelve patients were coinfected with HCV and HBV. Sixty patients were HBV surface antigen negative but positive for hepatitis B core antibody and/or hepatitis B surface antibody, and one hundred and twenty-seven patients had not been exposed to HBV. Rates of SVR in HBV and HCV coinfected patients, HBV prior infection, and no exposure to HBV were 100, 95, and 97%, respectively. Significant differences were seen between each group. No case showed HBV reactivation. Conclusions: DAA treatments were effective in patients with HBV coinfection or HBV prior infection, as well as HCV monoinfection. As the number of cases was small, we still suggest caution regarding HBV reactivation in HCV and HBV coinfected patients undergoing treatment with DAA.
Part of the book: Update on Hepatitis C