Journal Article

Severe evolution of chronic hepatitis C in renal transplantation: a case control study

Hervé Zylberberg, Bertrand Nalpas, Françoise Carnot, Habib Skhiri, Hélène Fontaine, Christophe Legendre, Henri Kreis, Christian Bréchot and Stanislas Pol

in Nephrology Dialysis Transplantation

Published on behalf of European Renal Association - European Dialysis and Transplant Assoc

Volume 17, issue 1, pages 129-133
Published in print January 2002 | ISSN: 0931-0509
Published online January 2002 | e-ISSN: 1460-2385 | DOI:
Severe evolution of chronic hepatitis C in renal transplantation: a case control study

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Background. To evaluate the impact of kidney transplantation on histopathological progression of hepatitis C virus (HCV)‐related liver disease.

Methods. In a retrospective study, 28 HCV‐positive renal transplant patients, who underwent two sequential liver biopsies with a mean of 7.1±4.0 years, were compared with 28 matched immunocompetent controls.

Results. According to the Metavir score, the initial and final activity scores (from 0 to 3) increased from 0.2±0.4 to 1.4±1.1 (P<0.001) and those of fibrosis (from 0 to 4) from 0.5±0.5 to 2.0±1.4 (P<0.001) in the transplanted group, respectively, whereas the respective differences were not significant in the control group. The yearly progression rate of activity and fibrosis was significantly higher in the renal transplant group as compared with the immunocompetent group: 0.26±0.41 vs 0.01±0.19 (P<0.01) and 0.26±0.35 vs 0.05±0.21 (P<0.03), respectively. Twenty (71.5%) and 14 (50.0%) of the renal allograft recipients had activity and fibrosis progression as compared with four (16%) (P<0.001) and four (16%) (P<0.01) in immunocompetent patients; six kidney recipients (21.4%) evolved to cirrhosis vs only one in the control group (3.6%) (P=0.07). Liver‐related mortality was significantly higher during the follow‐up period in renal transplant patients than in the control group (10 vs 0%) (P<0.05).

Conclusion. Using conventional immunosuppressive regimen, renal transplantation is associated with a more severe evolution of chronic hepatitis C as compared with HCV‐infected immunocompetent subjects. Thus, the histopathological evaluation should be performed and anti‐viral therapy discussed before renal transplantation.

Keywords: HCV; immunocompromised; renal transplantation

Journal Article.  3234 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Nephrology

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