Peginterferon Plus Ribavirin and Sustained Virological Response in HCV-Related Cirrhosis: Outcomes and Factors Predicting Response.Fernández-Rodríguez CM, Alonso S, Martinez SM, Forns X, Sanchez-Tapias JM, Rincón D, Rodriguez-Caravaca G, Bárcena R, Serra MA, Romero-Gómez M, Fernandez I, Garcia-Samaniego J, Fuente J, Solá R, Moreno-Otero R, Planas R. Am J Gastroenterol. 2010 Aug 10. [Epub ahead of print] OBJECTIVES:Patients with hepatitis C virus (HCV) cirrhosis are difficult to treat and have a high risk of liver decompensation or hepatocellular carcinoma. We sought to identify factors that could predict treatment response.
METHODS:Collaborating centers (n=26) provided data for patients (n=568) with HCV cirrhosis undergoing treatment with peginterferon-alpha plus ribavirin (RBV). Univariate and multivariate analyses were used to evaluate factors predicting treatment outcomes.RESULTS:Sustained viral response (SVR) in naive patients was 30.7%, with no significant differences between centers. Median follow-up was 35 months (range: 1-81). Factors predicting SVR were: non-genotype 1 (odds ratio (OR)=4.183; 95% confidence interval (CI): 2.353-7.438) overall dose and >/=80% of the scheduled time of treatment (OR=3.177; 95% CI: 1.752-5.760); serum gamma-glutamyl transpeptidase (GGT) <76 IU per ml (OR=4.092; 95% CI: 2.418-6.927); baseline viral load <6 x 10(5) (OR=2.597; 95% CI: 1.583-4.262); absence of ultrasound signs of portal hypertension (OR=2.067; 95% CI: 1.26-3.39). No patient with a HCV-RNA decline <1 log(10) at week 4 achieved SVR. Event-free survival at 5 years was 91% in patients with SVR vs. 59% in non-responders (P<0.001). Overall survival in patients with SVR was 98% vs. 86% in non-responders (P=0.005). Independent factors predicting events were absence of SVR (hazard ratio (HR)=2.66; 95% CI: 1.32-5.54), baseline serum albumin <3.9 g per 100 ml (HR=3.06; 95% CI: 1.81-5.15), presence of esophageal varices on endoscopy (HR=2.489; 95% CI: 1.546-4). Improved outcome was more evident in responders with less advanced disease at baseline.CONCLUSIONS:SVR can be achieved in approximately one-third of patients with HCV-related cirrhosis. SVR independently reduces the likelihood of clinical decompensation and improves survival