The risk factors and clinical outcomes in hepatitis B seropositive and seronegative renal transplant patients

Am J Nephrol. 2024 Mar 18. doi: 10.1159/000538231. Online ahead of print.


Introduction: Hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection is prevalent in Asia including Taiwan. We retrospectively evaluated the risk of HBV reactivation and clinical outcomes in HBV+ and HBV- kidney transplant recipients.

Methods: Patients who underwent kidney transplantation between January 2004 and December 2021 were reviewed. The outcomes of interest included risks of HBV reactivation and patient/graft survival.

Results: We identified 337 patients (47.5 ± 12 years) were enrolled in our final cohort. Fifty-two (15.4%) had HBsAg positive at the time of transplantation. Seventeen developed viral reactivations, with 41.2% of them accompanied by active hepatitis. The graft survival, acute rejection rate, and cancer development after kidney transplantation did not differ in terms of HBsAg status. The Cox multivariate analysis indicated the HBV reactivation risk was increased by a lack of pre-transplant anti-HBV medication [hazard ratio (HR), 5.95; 95% confidence interval (CI), 1.31-27.02; P = 0.021 or an absence of lifelong antiviral therapy [HR, 3.14; 95% CI, 1.01-9.74; P = 0.047] Conclusion: Individuals, independent of HBsAg status, had similar prognosis in terms of patient and graft survival, acute rejection rate, and cancer development. The absence of either pre-transplant anti-HBV medication or lifelong antiviral therapy was significantly associated with an increased risk of HBV reactivation.