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Keywords:

  • elastography;
  • fibrosis;
  • haemophilia;
  • hepatitis C;
  • HIV;
  • non-invasive

Summary.  Patients with inherited bleeding disorders frequently suffer from chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) mono- or human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)/HCV coinfection. Non-invasive markers for liver fibrosis are warranted for these patients. We tested a large cohort of haemophilic patients with HCV mono- or HIV/HCV coinfection for correlation of transient elastography (TE) with two simple surrogate markers of liver fibrosis and for differences in fibrosis stages according to these markers. We prospectively enrolled HCV-positive patients with congenital bleeding disorders with or without HIV coinfection. Liver function tests and platelet counts were determined and TE was performed. Aspartate aminotransferase-to-platelet ratio index (APRI) and a simple index called FIB-4 were calculated and results were correlated with TE. A total number of 174 patients were included (23% HCV, 36% HIV/HCV coinfected, 33% with cleared HCV and 8% with ongoing HIV but cleared HCV). TE correlated significantly with APRI and FIB-4 (r = 0.60; P < 0.001 and r = 0.54; < 0.001 respectively). This correlation was pronounced in patients with ongoing HCV infection (r = 0.67; < 0.001 and r = 0.60; < 0.001). Prediction of advanced fibrosis resulted in concordance rates >80% with combinations of TE plus APRI and APRI plus FIB-4. HIV/HCV coinfected patients did not present with advanced fibrosis stages when compared with HCV-monoinfected patients. Combinations of two non-invasive markers may significantly reduce the number of liver biopsies in patients with bleeding disorders and advanced liver fibrosis. Furthermore, our data support previous studies that observed a favourable outcome in patients with HIV/HCV and a preserved immune function in times of highly active antiretroviral therapy.