Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Most Chronic Hepatitis C Sufferers Will Develop Cirrhosis In Later Life

Date:
September 6, 2005
Source:
American Gastroenterological Association
Summary:
Nearly 80 percent of chronic hepatitis C sufferers who have the disease for several decades will develop cirrhosis or end-stage liver disease later in life, according to a study published today in the American Gastroenterological Association (AGA) journal Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology. Researchers found that it is highly likely that people who are infected with hepatitis C (HCV) for more than 60 years will develop cirrhosis -- the highest rate of hepatitis C-associated cirrhosis reported to date.

Bethesda, Maryland (Sept. 1, 2005) -- Nearly 80 percent of chronichepatitis C sufferers who have the disease for several decades willdevelop cirrhosis or end-stage liver disease later in life, accordingto a study published today in the American GastroenterologicalAssociation (AGA) journal Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology.Researchers found that it is highly likely that people who are infectedwith hepatitis C (HCV) for more than 60 years will developcirrhosis--the highest rate of hepatitis C-associated cirrhosisreported to date.

Hepatitis C is a virus that affects the liver and is spreadprimarily by contact with blood and blood products in transfusions andamong drug users who share needles. Other common routes of transmissionare infants born to HCV-infected mothers, tattoos and body piercingsand risky sexual behavior. Of those who are infected, more than 80percent will be chronic carriers of the disease. HCV can causelong-term scarring of the liver and usually presents with mild andnon-specific symptoms, if any. They include fatigue, nausea, poorappetite and muscle and joint pain. It is estimated that more than 4million Americans are now infected with HCV (more than 170 millionpeople worldwide) and nearly 10,000 Americans die from the disease eachyear.

"Hepatitis C begins generally as a silent acute infection, witha fraction of the patients developing cirrhosis, end-stage liverdisease or liver cancer," according to an editorial appearing in thismonth's journal. "Although this is a generally accepted scenario inpersons infected with HCV, there remains uncertainty about the truefrequency of evolution of liver disease and its rate of progression."

According to results of the study from researchers at the QueenMary's School of Medicine and Dentistry in London, the prevalence ofcirrhosis in patients with chronic HCV increases with the duration ofthe disease. Nearly 80 percent of Asian patients who were infected atbirth and lived with the disease for 60 years or more developedcirrhosis--a finding that researchers say can be applied to the generalpopulation because of the similarity in the way the disease progressesin all ethnic groups.

"This study suggests that prolonged infection with hepatitis Cleads to cirrhosis in the majority of those who are infected," saidGraham R. Foster, PhD, FRCP, study author and professor of hepatologyat Queen Mary's School of Medicine and Dentistry in London. "Whileprevious studies have found differences in disease progression invarious ethnic groups, our findings confirm that fibrosis progressionis the same across these groups and leads to development of cirrhosisand liver disease at the same rate in everyone."

Researchers conducted retrospective analyses of 382 patientsdiagnosed with hepatitis C at three hospitals in northeast Londonbetween 1992 and 2003. Study participants were divided into two groups:Asian patients presumably infected in childhood and Caucasian patients.While the prevalence of cirrhosis in Caucasian patients was similar tothe findings of previous studies, the statistics in Asians weremarkedly higher than previously found. The higher prevalence waspartially attributed to the longer duration of HCV in the Asian patientpopulation, those patients having suffered with the disease nearly 30years more than the Caucasian subjects.

###

This study was funded by local investigators and an unrestricted research grant from Roche Pharmaceuticals.

For more information on hepatitis C, visit www.gastro.org.

About the AGA
The American Gastroenterological Association (AGA) is dedicated to themission of advancing the science and practice of gastroenterology.Founded in 1897, the AGA is the oldest medical-specialty society in theUnited States. The AGA's 14,500 members include physicians andscientists who research, diagnose and treat disorders of thegastrointestinal tract and liver. On a monthly basis, the AGA publishestwo highly respected journals, Gastroenterology and Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology.The AGA's annual meeting is Digestive Disease Week, which is held eachMay and is the largest international gathering of physicians,researchers and academics in the fields of gastroenterology,hepatology, endoscopy and gastrointestinal surgery.

About Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology
The mission of Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatologyis to provide readers with a broad spectrum of themes in clinicalgastroenterology and hepatology. This monthly peer-reviewed journalincludes original articles as well as scholarly reviews, with the goalthat all articles published will be immediately relevant to thepractice of gastroenterology and hepatology. For more information,visit www.cghjournal.org.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Gastroenterological Association. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Gastroenterological Association. "Most Chronic Hepatitis C Sufferers Will Develop Cirrhosis In Later Life." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 September 2005. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/09/050906074958.htm>.
American Gastroenterological Association. (2005, September 6). Most Chronic Hepatitis C Sufferers Will Develop Cirrhosis In Later Life. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/09/050906074958.htm
American Gastroenterological Association. "Most Chronic Hepatitis C Sufferers Will Develop Cirrhosis In Later Life." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/09/050906074958.htm (accessed July 29, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Deadly Ebola Virus Threatens West Africa

Deadly Ebola Virus Threatens West Africa

AP (July 28, 2014) West African nations and international health organizations are working to contain the largest Ebola outbreak in history. It's one of the deadliest diseases known to man, but the CDC says it's unlikely to spread in the U.S. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

AP (July 28, 2014) A bipartisan deal to improve veterans health care would authorize at least $15 billion in emergency spending to fix a veterans program scandalized by long patient wait times and falsified records. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Two Americans Contract Ebola in Liberia

Two Americans Contract Ebola in Liberia

Reuters - US Online Video (July 28, 2014) Two American aid workers in Liberia test positive for Ebola while working to combat the deadliest outbreak of the virus ever. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

AP (July 28, 2014) Classes are being offered nationwide to encourage African Americans to learn about cooking fresh foods based on traditional African cuisine. The program is trying to combat obesity, heart disease and other ailments often linked to diet. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins