Potent antiviral therapy improves survival in acute on chronic liver failure due to hepatitis B virus reactivation

Cyriac Abby Philips, Shiv Kumar Sarin
World Journal of Gastroenterology: WJG 2014 November 21, 20 (43): 16037-52
Acute on chronic liver failure (ACLF) is a disease entity with a high mortality rate. The acute event arises from drugs and toxins, viral infections, bacterial sepsis, interventions (both surgical and non-surgical) and vascular events on top of a known or occult chronic liver disease. ACLF secondary to reactivation of chronic hepatitis B virus is a distinct condition; the high mortality of which can be managed in the wake of new potent antiviral therapy. For example, lamivudine and entecavir use has shown definite short-term survival benefits, even though drug resistance is a concern in the former. The renoprotective effects of telbivudine have been shown in a few studies to be useful in the presence of renal dysfunction. Monotherapy with newer agents such as tenofovir and a combination of nucleos(t)ides is promising for improving survival in this special group of liver disease patients. This review describes the current status of potent antiviral therapy in patient with acute on chronic liver failure due to reactivation of chronic hepatitis B, thereby providing an algorithm in management of such patients.

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