Abstract: #1582 Chronic Hepatitis C and Autoimmune Hepatitis Overlap Syndrome: Fact or Fiction? – Juan Putra, et al. By Lucinda Porter, RN
In addition to having hepatitis C, some patients are also diagnosed with autoimmune hepatitis (AIH), leading to a diagnosis of overlap syndrome (HCV-AIH). Not only is this an uncommon diagnosis, it is controversial since both diseases share common features. This study evaluated biopsies from 2011 to 2018 of 5 patients with HCV-AIH who were treated with direct-acting antiviral agents (DAAs).
Conclusion: Even without immunosuppression, most patients showed improvement in liver tissue following DAA treatment. Researchers state that the results suggest that the autoimmune component is a secondary phenomenon of HCV. They recommended using the term “HCV with autoimmune features” instead of HCV-AIH to prevent overtreatment with immunosuppressants.
Editorial Comments: Although this is a very small study, it opens the door wider to examining the role of HCV on the immune system, particularly when autoimmune features appear to be present.
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