Korean J Med.  2012 Dec;83(6):728-730.

Occult Hepatitis B Virus Infection in Patients with Chronic Hepatitis C: Innocent Bystander or Not?

Affiliations
  • 1Department of Internal Medicine, Inje Univerisity Ilsanpaik Hospital, Goyang, Korea. jsleemd@paik.ac.kr

Abstract

Occult hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection is defined as the presence of HBV DNA in the liver (with or without detectable HBV DNA in serum) for individuals testing HBV surface antigen negative. Until recently, the clinical implication of occult HBV infection was unclear. Several studies suggest a high prevalence of occult HBV infection among patients with chronic liver disease. Occult HBV infection is a complex entity comprising many conditions and situations that may be widely different from the biological point of view and clinical consequences. Data regarding natural course and therapy in chronic hepatitis C patients with occult HBV are limited and based on small case numbers. These considerations imply the need for a critical re-evaluation of this field to define better strategies to diagnose and treat this infection.

Keyword

Hepatitis C, chronic; Hepatitis B virus; Occult infection
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