Vol. 48, No. 6, 2005
Issue release date: November–December 2005
Intervirology 2005;48:341–349
Original Paper
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Long-Term Results of Lamivudine Monotherapy in Korean Patients with HBeAg-Positive Chronic Hepatitis B: Response and Relapse Rates, and Factors Related to Durability of HBeAg Seroconversion

Yoon S.K. · Jang J.W. · Kim C.W. · Bae S.H. · Choi J.Y. · Choi S.W. · Lee Y.S. · Lee C.D. · Chung K.W. · Sun H.S. · Kim B.S.
Department of Internal Medicine and WHO Collaborating Center for Reference and Research on Viral Hepatitis, College of Medicine, Catholic University of Korea, Seoul, South Korea
email Corresponding Author

 goto top of outline Key Words

  • Chronic hepatitis B
  • Lamivudine
  • Antiviral response
  • HBeAg seroconversion

 goto top of outline Abstract

Objective: The aim of this study was to evaluate retrospectively the long-term effects of lamivudine in 461 Korean patients with chronic hepatitis B who were treated for more than 12 months. Methods: The annual rates of virological response and breakthrough were examined and the predictive factors for post-treatment relapse in 114 patients who achieved hepatitis B e antigen (HBeAg) loss or seroconversion after lamivudine therapy were also analyzed. Results: During follow-up, the rates of HBeAg seroconversion after 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 years of treatment were 22.9, 33.2, 47.6, 54.2 and 58.8%, respectively, while those for virological breakthrough at 1, 2, 3 and 4 years were 8.2, 41.7, 55.7 and 64.8%, respectively. Ninety-five patients (20.6%) had HBeAg seroconversion and 19 (4.1%) showed HBeAg loss alone with disappearance of hepatitis B virus DNA in serum. Seroconversion was higher with prolonged treatment in patients who had elevated serum alanine aminotransferase. The cumulative relapse rates in the seroconversion group were 52.0 and 55.7% 1 and 2 years after treatment, respectively. Age and the duration of additional treatment were significant predictive factors for post-treatment relapse. Patients aged ≤40 who had additional treatment for >12 months after seroconversion had the lowest relapse rate (p < 0.001). Conclusions: These results suggest that additional treatment for over 12 months after HBeAg seroconversion in younger patients may produce a better long-term outcome.

Copyright © 2005 S. Karger AG, Basel

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 goto top of outline Author Contacts

Seung Kew Yoon, MD
Department of Internal Medicine, Kangnam St. Mary’s Hospital
Catholic University of Korea, No. 505 Banpo-dong, Seocho-ku
Seoul 137-040 (South Korea)
Tel. +82 2 590 2622, Fax +82 2 3481 4025, E-Mail yoonsk@catholic.ac.kr

 goto top of outline Article Information

Received: August 27, 2004
Accepted after revision: November 22, 2004
Number of Print Pages : 9
Number of Figures : 7, Number of Tables : 5, Number of References : 35

 goto top of outline Publication Details

Intervirology (International Journal of Basic and Medical Virology)

Vol. 48, No. 6, Year 2005 (Cover Date: November-December 2005)

Journal Editor: Liebert, U.G. (Leipzig)
ISSN: 0300–5526 (print), 1423–0100 (Online)

For additional information: http://www.karger.com/int

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