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, 89 (4), 732-5

Hepatic Decompensation Associated With Hepatitis B E Antigen Clearance in Chronic Type B Hepatitis

Hepatic Decompensation Associated With Hepatitis B E Antigen Clearance in Chronic Type B Hepatitis

I S Sheen et al. Gastroenterology.

Abstract

To examine hepatic decompensation associated with acute exacerbation preceding hepatitis B e antigen clearance in chronic type B hepatitis, 376 patients with chronic hepatitis who were hepatitis B e antigen-positive were prospectively studied for up to 7 yr (mean 25 mo). Among the 165 patients who underwent hepatitis B e antigen clearance, 4 patients experienced hepatic decompensation and one of them eventually developed hepatic encephalopathy and died. The incidence of hepatic decompensation associated with hepatitis B e antigen clearance was 2.4%. We suggest that such an event in previously unrecognized chronic hepatitis B carriers could have been erroneously interpreted as acute or subacute hepatic failure, and that it might have been the result of a stronger enhancement of the host immune response.

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