Well-Controlled Viremia Predicts the Outcome of Hepatocellular Carcinoma in Chronic Viral Hepatitis Patients Treated with Sorafenib

Yuan Hung Kuo, Tzu Hsin Huang, Jing Houng Wang, Yen Yang Chen, Ming Chao Tsai, Yen Hao Chen, Sheng Nan Lu, Tsung Hui Hu, Chien Hung Chen, Chao Hung Hung*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article peer-review

5 Scopus citations


Without analyzing the status of viremia, hepatitis C virus-related hepatocellular carcinoma (HCV-HCC) patients are proposed to have better prognosis than hepatitis B virus-related HCC (HBV-HCC) patients using sorafenib. We aimed to elucidate the efficacy of concurrent sorafenib and anti-viral treatment for HCC patients with HBV or HCV infection in real world. Between January 2018 and January 2021, 256 unresectable HCC patients receiving first-line sorafenib were evaluated. High-potency nucleoside analogs were used for HBV control, whereas direct-acting antivirals were administered for HCV eradication. Well-controlled viremia was defined as patients who had undetectable viremia, or who had been receiving antivirals at least 6 months before sorafenib. We recruited 116 (65.2%) HBV-HCC patients and 62 (34.8%) HCV-HCC patients. Using sorafenib, progression-free survival and overall survival (OS) rates between these two groups were not different. Before sorafenib, 56% of HBV-HCC patients and 54.8% of HCV-HCC patients had well-controlled viremia and their OS was superior to those who had uncontrolled viremia (15.5 vs. 11.1 months, p = 0.001). Dividing our patients into four subgroups as well-controlled HCV viremia, well-controlled HBV viremia, uncontrolled HCV viremia, and uncontrolled HBV viremia, their OS rates were distributed with a significantly decreasing trend as 21.9 months, 15.0 months, 14.2 months, and 5.7 months (p = 0.009). Furthermore, well-controlled viremia was associated with mortality in multivariate analysis (Hazard ratio: 0.63, 95% confidence interval: 0.42–0.93, p = 0.022). In real-life, HBV or HCV infection did not contribute to the prognosis of HCC patients receiving sorafenib; however, whether viremia was controlled or not did contribute.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3971
Issue number16
StatePublished - 08 2022

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  • hepatitis B virus
  • hepatitis C virus
  • hepatocellular carcinoma
  • sorafenib
  • well-controlled viremia


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