Treatment and management options for the hepatitis C virus infected kidney transplant candidate

Adriana Dejman, Marco A. Ladino, David Roth

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

A substantial body of literature has unequivocally established that prevalent hepatitis C virus infection in chronic kidney disease (CKD), end stage renal disease (ESRD) and kidney transplant recipients is associated with a negative impact on patient survival. As a consequence of remarkable work that explained the details of the hepatitis C virus (HCV) genome, a class of drugs referred to as the direct-acting antiviral (DAA) agents were developed that targeted specific key sites in viral replication. Large clinical trials in the HCV-infected general population followed soon after that demonstrated cure rates exceeding 95%. Treatment paradigms have been further refined and expanded to populations of patients that were initially excluded from the large pivotal trials. This includes the CKD and ESRD patients for whom there are now safe and effective DAAs available as well. In this context, the focus of decision making has shifted from initially demonstrating safety and efficacy to now identifying which patient should receive therapy and at what point in their CKD/ESRD journey. The specific issue of timing of treatment is particularly relevant to the HCV-infected ESRD patient who is being considered for kidney transplantation. The option of treating with DAAs prior to the transplant or alternatively delaying therapy and treating in the posttransplant period will be influenced by several factors, including patient preference, the extent of liver injury, the availability of a living or deceased donor, and more recently the option of transplanting a kidney from HCV-positive donor. The latter has been associated with the advantage of shortened waiting times and expansion of the organ donor pool. The optimal timing and choice of therapy will be the result of a decision that has been individualized for each patient as a consequence of a process of clear communication involving the patient, primary care physician, nephrologist, gastroenterologist (GI)/hepatologist, and local transplant center.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)S36-S44
JournalHemodialysis International
Volume22
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2018

Keywords

  • Hepatitis C virus
  • direct-acting antivirals
  • kidney transplant

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Nephrology

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