Risk of developing hepatocellular carcinoma after hepatitis C virus cure, though significantly reduced, remains relatively high at 0.33 percent per year, according to a study in Hepatology.
Researchers conducted a retrospective cohort study using data from the Veterans Affairs HCV Clinical Case Registry in patients with positive HCV RNA between October 1999 and August 2009 and follow-up through December 2010. They identified 33,005 HCV-infected individuals who received treatment, of whom 10,817 achieved sustained virological response.
Here are three insights:
1. Among those who achieved sustained virological response, 100 developed new hepatocellular carcinoma.
2. Annual risk of hepatocellular carcinoma remained considerably high among patients with cirrhosis (1.39 percent) and those cured after age 64 (0.95 percent).
3. Patients with diabetes or genotype 3 infection were significantly more likely to develop hepatocellular carcinoma.