Hepatitis C Treatment in Chronic Kidney Disease Patients: The Kidney Disease Improving Global Outcomes Perspective.
Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is a very common infection found among hemodialysis (HD) and kidney transplant patients. It is associated with substantial morbidity and mortality. Direct-acting antiviral agents (DAAs) have much better efficacy (sustained viral response (SVR)) and tolerance than interferon-based regimens. Very recent studies extend this breakthrough finding to chronic kidney disease (CKD) populations.CKD patients with an estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) >30 ml/min/1.73 m2 can be treated with any licensed DAA regimen. In CKD stages 4-5 (mostly HD), the combination of grazoprevir (100 mg) and elbasvir (50 mg), a once-daily oral regimen active against genotypes 1 and 4, induced in a very recent RCT an SVR rate >95%, with tolerance similar to that of placebo. Case series suggest that other DAA regimens are also very effective and well tolerated in HD patients. In kidney transplant recipients, 2 case series have reported 100% SVR with good tolerance of sofosbuvir-based regimens. Importantly, there is a risk of drug-drug interaction of several DAAs including calcineurin inhibitors. Finally, the availability of HCV+ grafts may markedly shorten the waiting time for transplantation. Key Messages: (1) In patients with an eGFR >30, all licensed DAAs regimens can be used. (2) Cure of HCV appears at hand in CKD stages 4-5, including dialysis patients, and in kidney transplant recipients. (3) The choice of DAA regimen in CKD should be based on HCV genotype, viral load, eGFR, concomitant medications, transplant candidacy and comorbidities. (4) The timing of treatment in potential kidney transplantation candidates (before versus after transplantation) should be decided in collaboration with the transplant center. Video Journal Club 'Cappuccino with Claudio Ronco' at http://www.karger.com/?doi=452730.
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