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New fibrosis classification improves accuracy of diagnosis in hepatitis C
Date:1/10/2012

A new classification for diagnosing fibrosis in patients with chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) has shown to be as accurate as currently used algorithms, but required no further liver biopsy. The study appearing in the January issue of Hepatology, a journal published by Wiley-Blackwell on behalf of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases, details a method that synchronously combines two fibrosis tests, providing a non-invasive and more precise fibrosis diagnosis.

HCV affects up to 170,000 million individuals worldwide and is a leading cause of chronic liver disease and a primary indication for liver transplantation according to the World Health Organization (WHO). The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that 2.7 to 3.9 million Americans are living with chronic HCV with roughly 12,000 deaths reported each year. WHO has reported up to 20% of HCV patients develop cirrhosis and 1% to 5% die from cirrhosis or liver cancer.

"Fibrosis progression can be highly unpredictable and accurate classification of the stage of fibrosis is extremely important," said Dr. Jrme Boursier from Centre Hospitalier Universitaire d'Angers in France. "A diagnostic algorithm that provides similar accuracy as successive classifications without the need of liver biopsy to determine the extent of fibrosis is highly beneficial to patients."

Dr. Boursier and colleagues evaluated the Sequential Algorithm for Fibrosis Evaluation (SAFE) and Bordeaux algorithm (BA), compared to a more detailed classification for determining fibrosis severity. The team used data for 1785 patients with chronic HCV who were enrolled in 3 previous study populations (SNIFF, VINDIAG, and FIBROSTAR), representing a total of 31 centers throughout France. Data included liver biopsy, blood fibrosis test, and Fibroscanan ultrasound technology used to assess liver fibrosis (stiffness).

The team found that successive SAFE diagnostic accuracy wa
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Contact: Dawn Peters
healthnews@wiley.com
781-388-8408
Wiley-Blackwell
Source:Eurekalert

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