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Keywords:

  • chronic hepatitis D;
  • hepatitis D therapy;
  • hepatitis D virus;
  • hepatitis therapy;
  • interferon;
  • peg-interferon

Abstract

Interferon is the only therapy for chronic hepatitis D. Nucleos(t)ides are not effective against the helper hepatitis B virus. The current therapeutic recommendation is a weekly dose of pegylated interferon (PEG-IFN)-α, for 12–18 months. Serum HDV-RNA only becomes undetectable after 6 months of therapy in about a quarter of the patients. Hepatitis D virus (HDV) may relapse in patients if they remain HBsAg positive. Although the end-point of therapy is the clearance of the HBsAg, this is seldom achieved. Current management of HDV patients is based on standard practices which should be pragmatic and individualized.