BACKGROUND/AIMS: Despite great progress, antiviral treatment for chronic hepatitis C in patients with prior hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) has been rarely investigated. We evaluated the efficacy and safety of antiviral therapy following treatment for hepatitis C-related HCC.
METHODS: Thirteen patients (age 34 to 60 years) who were treated with peginterferon plus ribavirin after treatment for HCC were reviewed.
RESULTS: There were 6 patients with genotype 1 and 7 patients with genotype 2. All patients showed advanced fibrosis (≥F3) but belonged to the Child-Pugh class A. Treatment was stopped in 2 patients because of recurrent HCC and in 1 patient due to a lack of early virologic response. Seven patients achieved sustained virologic response and three patients relapsed. The sustained virologic response rate was 54% overall, 17% in genotype 1, and 86% in genotype 2. No significant adverse events were reported.
CONCLUSIONS: Antiviral therapy should not be excluded in patients who were previously treated with HCC with genotype 2 chronic hepatitis C, in which an efficacious antiviral treatment for chronic hepatitis C was feasible. Additional study is needed to prove the validity of antiviral therapy in patients with genotype 1 hepatitis C-related HCC.