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Patients infected with HIV have higher drop-out rate for liver transplantation
Date:1/25/2011

French researchers determined that infection with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) impaired results of transplant surgery for liver cancer, with more HIV infected patients dropping off the transplantation wait list. The team found that overall survival and recurrence-free survival was not impacted following liver transplantation in patients with controlled HIV disease. Details of this single center studythe largest to dateare published in the February issue of Hepatology, a peer-reviewed journal of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD).

More than 40 million individuals are infected with HIV; of these roughly two to four million and four to five million are also carriers of chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) and hepatitis C virus (HCV), respectively. With the introduction of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) in 1996 the survival of patients with HIV infection has improved dramatically and now end-stage liver disease has become the principal cause of death among HIV- positive patients co-infected HBV or HCV. Prior studies have shown that 25% of liver-related mortality in HIV-positive patients is attributable to hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), or liver cancer.

"Liver transplantation is the optimum treatment for HCC and can also be considered for controlled HIV-positive patients with liver cancer," said Ren Adam, MD, PhD, from Hospital Paul Brousse in France and lead author of the current study. "Our study showed that HIV infection impaired the results of liver transplantation on an intent-to-treat basis but exerted no significant impact on overall survival and recurrence-free survival following transplantation."

The research team analyzed data from 21 HIV-infected and 65 HIV-negative patients with HCC who were listed for liver transplantation between 2003 and 2008. All HIV-positive patients were treated with HAART and had not experience any AIDS event or opportunistic infections prior to bein
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