Chronic hepatitis C virus infection in older adults

Esther Lee Marcus, Ran Tur-Kaspa

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Most of the older adults with chronic hepatitis C virus infection acquired the disease earlier in life. These patients often present with complications of liver disease, mainly cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma. The burden of chronic hepatitis C virus infection in elderly persons is expected to increase significantly in the United States during the next 2 decades. It seems important that, for elderly patients with chronic hepatitis C, the risk-benefit of combination antiviral therapy consisting of pegylated interferon and ribavirin should be assessed on an individual basis. Assessment should be performed in all cases before considering treatment, and it should include evaluation of the degree of liver fibrosis by means of liver biopsy or, possibly, by means of noninvasive methods. Novel antiviral drugs that may have fewer adverse effects, such as protease inhibitors, may serve as potential alternatives. It is recommended that elderly patients (up to the age of 75 years) be included in randomized trials of chronic hepatitis C virus infection treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1606-1612
Number of pages7
JournalClinical Infectious Diseases
Issue number11
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2005
Externally publishedYes


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