Non-viral liver disease burden in HIV monoinfected individuals: a longitudinal observational retrospective cohort study

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Shur, Natalie F ; Goubet, Stephanie ; Fisher, Martin ; Gilleece, Yvonne ; Verma, Sumita ; Tan, Yishi (2016)

Recent advances in antiviral therapy have improved outcomes in HIV-positive individuals co-infected with hepatitis B and C virus (HBV/HCV). Our aim was to assess prevalence and predictors of chronic liver disease (CLD) due to the metabolic syndrome (MS), alcohol and antiretrovirals (ARVs) use in HIV-monoinfected individuals. This was a retrospective cohort study (2005–2012). HIV-positive patients with negative HBV/HCV serology and at least two elevated alanine aminotransferase (ALT) levels six months apart were included. Data are presented as mean ± SD or percentage. Despite negative viral serology, 27% (1047/3872) of HIV-positive individuals had persistently elevated ALT. Only 243 (23.2%) were investigated (by imaging in the majority, only 58 undergoing liver biopsy/transient elastography). CLD was identified in 66.2%, this being clinically significant in one in four individuals. Potential CLD risk factors were alcohol (44.2%), hepatotoxic ARVs (74.1%) and MS risk factors (68%) with 68.7% having >1 risk factor. On multivariate logistic regression analysis serum triglyceride (OR 1.482, 95% CI 1.053–2.086, p = .024) was the only independent predictor of CLD. Overall, 4.3% were referred to Hepatology services. In conclusion, less than 6% of HIV-monoinfected individuals with persistently elevated ALT undergo objective assessment of hepatic fibrosis. Despite non-stringent criteria, some degree of non-viral CLD is identified in approximately two-thirds of those investigated, risk factors being synonymous with those for the MS. This increasing yet under-recognised non-viral CLD burden warrants timely recognition to prevent long-term morbidity and mortality.
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