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See detailEARLY ALLOGRAFT DYSFUNCTION DECREASES PATIENT SURVIVAL AFTER LIVER TRANSPLANTATION
MEURISSE, Nicolas ULg; FIEUWS, S; JOCHMANS, I et al

Poster (2014, April)

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See detailThe influence of laboratory-induced Meld score differences on liver allocation: more reality than myth.
Schouten, J. N.; Francque, S.; Van Vlierberghe, H. et al

in Clinical Transplantation (2012), 26(1), 62-70

Background: Liver allocation in Eurotransplant (ET) is based on the MELD score. Interlaboratory MELD score differences in INR and creatinine determination have been reported. The clinical implication of ... [more ▼]

Background: Liver allocation in Eurotransplant (ET) is based on the MELD score. Interlaboratory MELD score differences in INR and creatinine determination have been reported. The clinical implication of this observation has not been demonstrated. Methods: MELD scores were calculated in 66 patients with liver cirrhosis using bilirubin, creatinine, and INR analyzed in six liver transplant centers. Based on allocation results of ET, patients transplanted from December 2006 to June 2007 were divided according to MELD score in four groups. For each group, the influence of the match MELD on the probability of receiving a transplant was studied (Cox proportional hazards model). Results: Laboratory-dependent significant differences in MELD score were demonstrated. Cox proportional hazards model showed a significant association between MELD score and the probability of organ allocation. The unadjusted hazard ratio for receiving a liver transplant was significantly different between group 2 and group 4 (group 2: MELD 19–24; group 4: MELD > 30). Conclusion: Laboratory-dependent significant differences in MELD score were observed between the six transplant centers. We demonstrated a significant association between the MELD score and the probability of organ allocation. The observed interlaboratory variation might yield a significant difference in organ allocation in patients with high MELD scores. [less ▲]

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See detailSeptuagenarian and octogenarian Donors Provide Excellent Liver Grafts for Transplantation
DARIUS, T; MONBALIU, D; JOCHMANS, I et al

in Transplantation Proceedings (2012), 44

Background. Wider utilization of liver grafts from donors 70 years old could substan- tially expand the organ pool, but their use remains limited by fear of poorer outcomes. We examined the results at our ... [more ▼]

Background. Wider utilization of liver grafts from donors 70 years old could substan- tially expand the organ pool, but their use remains limited by fear of poorer outcomes. We examined the results at our center of liver transplantation (OLT) using livers from donors 70 years old. Methods. From February 2003 to August 2010, we performed 450 OLT including 58 (13%) using donors 70 whose outcomes were compared with those using donors 70 years old. Results. Cerebrovascular causes of death predominated among donors 70 (85% vs 47% in donors 70; P .001). In contrast, traumatic causes of death predominated among donors 70 (36% vs 14% in donors 70; P .002). Unlike grafts from donors 70 years old, grafts from older individuals had no additional risk factors (steatosis, high sodium, or hemodynamic instability). Both groups were comparable for cold and warm ischemia times. No difference was noted in posttransplant peak transaminases, incidence of primary nonfunction, hepatic artery thrombosis, biliary strictures, or retransplantation rates between groups. The 1- and 5-year patient survivals were 88% and 82% in recipients of livers 70 versus 90% and 84% in those from 70 years old ( P .705). Recipients of older grafts, who were 6 years older than recipients of younger grafts ( P .001), tended to have a lower laboratory Model for End-Stage Liver Disease score ( P .074). Conclusions. Short and mid-term survival following OLT using donors 70 yo can be excellent provided that there is adequate donor and recipient selection. Septuagenarians and octogenarians with cerebrovascular ischemic and bleeding accidents represent a large pool of potential donors whose wider use could substantially reduce mortality on the OLT waiting list. [less ▲]

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See detailOUTCOMES OF LIVER TRANSPLANTATION USING DONATIONS AFTER CIRCULATORY DEATH : A SINGLE-CENTER EXPERIENCE
MEURISSE, Nicolas ULg; VANDEN BUSSCHE, S; JOCHMANS, I et al

in Transplantation Proceedings (2012), 44

Introduction Orthotopic liver transplantation (OLT) (LTx) using donation after circulatory death (DCD) donors is increasingly performed, but still considered to risk of poorer outcomes compared with ... [more ▼]

Introduction Orthotopic liver transplantation (OLT) (LTx) using donation after circulatory death (DCD) donors is increasingly performed, but still considered to risk of poorer outcomes compared with standard donations after brain death (DBD)-OLT. Therefore we reviewed our results of DCD-OLT. Patients and Methods Between 2003 and 2010, we performed 30 DCD-OLT (6% of all OLT). We retrospectively reviewed medical records of donors and recipients after DCD versus DBD-OLT to analyze biliary complications, retransplantation rates, and patient/graft survivals. Results Median donor age was similar for DCD and DBD-OLT: 51 versus 53 years (P = .244). Median donor warm ischemia time (stop ventilation to cold perfusion in DCD donors) was 24 minutes. Median cold ischemia time was shorter for DCD (6 hours 54 minutes) compared with DBD-OLT (8 hours 36 minutes; P < .0001). Median laboratory model of end-stage liver disease score was 15 for DCD, and 16 for DBD-OLT (P = .59). Median post-OLT Aspartate Aminotransferase (AST) peak was higher after DCD: 1178 versus DBD-OLT 651 IU/L (P = .005). The incidence of nonanastomotic strictures was different: 33.3% for DCD versus 12.5% for DBD-OLT (P = .001). The overall retransplantation rate was 3% after both DCD and DBD-OLT. After DCD-LTx actuarial 1, 3- and 5-year patient survivals were 93, 85 and 85%, and corresponding graft survivals, 90%, 82%, and 82% respectively, and not different compared with DBD-OLT: 88%, 78%, and 72% (P = .348) and 85%, 74%, and 68% (P = .524) respectively. Conclusion Despite substantial ischemic injury (high peak AST and biliary strictures) short- and long-term survival after DCD-OLT was comparable to DBD-OLT. Rapid donor surgery, careful donor and recipient selection, as well as short warm and cold ischemia times are key factors to optimize outcomes after DCD-OLT. However, strategies to reduce biliary complications remain warranted. [less ▲]

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See detailEfficacy of interferon-based antiviral therapy in patients with chonic hepatitis C infected HCV genotype 5: a meta-analysis of two large prospective clinical trials
D'Heygere, F.; George, C.; Van Vlierberghe, H. et al

in Journal of Medical Virology (2011), 83(5), 815-819

The characteristics and response rate to pegylated interferon and ribavirin (PEG-INF + RBV) of patients with chronic hepatitis C infected with genotype 5 are poorly documented. A meta-analysis of two ... [more ▼]

The characteristics and response rate to pegylated interferon and ribavirin (PEG-INF + RBV) of patients with chronic hepatitis C infected with genotype 5 are poorly documented. A meta-analysis of two large phase III/IV prospective randomized clinical trials conducted in Belgium in patients with chronic hepatitis C (n = 1,073 patients) was performed in order to compare the response to antiviral therapy of hepatitis C virus (HCV) genotype 5 with that of other HCV genotypes. A subset of HCV-1 infected patients selected from within the study database were selected to match the HCV-5 sample for known prognostic factors. In Belgium HCV-5 is responsible for a significant minority of cases of chronic hepatitis C CHC (4.5%) and is characterized by a more advanced age (58.4 years), a high frequency of cirrhosis (27.7%), a specific mode of HCV acquisition, and a particular geographic origin (66.7% of patients from West Flanders). The primary comparative analysis showed that response to treatment with PEG-INF + RBV of HCV-5 is similar to HCV-1 and lower compared to HCV-2/3. The analysis of the matched patient subgroup demonstrates that the HCV-5 "intrinsic sensitivity" to PEG-IFN + RBV therapy is identical to HCV-1, with a sustained virological response of 55% in both groups. In contrast to previous publications, this meta-analysis suggests that HCV-5 response to treatment is closer to HCV-1 than to HCV-2/3 and suggests that in Belgium HCV-5 infection should be treated with the same antiviral regimen as HCV-1. [less ▲]

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See detailLiver transplantation for donation after cardiocirculatory death donors: Belgian experience 2003-2009
DE ROOVER, Arnaud ULg; Ledinh, H.; Donckier, V. et al

Conference (2011, March 24)

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See detailOutcome of patients with hepatocellular carcinoma listed for liver transplantation before and after the MELD-based allocation system within Eurotransplant. A BElgian multicentre retrospective study.
Vos, B.; Rogge, S.; Nevens, F. et al

in Acta Gastro-Enterologica Belgica (2011, March), 74(1), 13

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See detailEffectiveness and tolerability of pegylated interferon alfa2b in combination with ribavirin for treatment of chronic hepatitis C: the PegIntrust study
Van Vlierberghe, H.; Adler, M.; Bastens, B. et al

in Acta Gastro-Enterologica Belgica (2010), 73

Background and study aims : Large international clinical trials conducted in the past 5 years rapidly improved the treatment of chronic hepatitis C; however, it is unclear whether the advances seen in ... [more ▼]

Background and study aims : Large international clinical trials conducted in the past 5 years rapidly improved the treatment of chronic hepatitis C; however, it is unclear whether the advances seen in clinical trials are being paralleled by similar improvements in routine clinical practice. PegIntrust is a Belgian community based trial evaluating the sustained virological response. Patients and Methods : Observational study of 219 patients receiving pegylated interferon alfa-2b (1.5 μg/kg/wk) and weight-based ribavirin (800-1200 mg/day) for 48 weeks. Primary study end point was sustained virological response (SVR), defined as undetectable HCV RNA 6 months after the completion of treatment. Results : In total, 108 patients (49.3 %) had undetectable HCV RNA at the end of therapy, 91 (41.6%) attaining SVR. Of the 111 patients without an end-of-treatment response, 28 were non-responders, and 21 had virological breakthrough. In total, 134 patients attained early virological response (EVR); 88 (65.7%) of those patients attained SVR. In contrast, 82 (96.5 %) of the 85 patients who did not attain EVR also did not attain SVR. Age, fibrosis score and baseline viral load were identified as important predictors of treatment outcome. The most frequently reported serious adverse events resulting in treatment discontinuation were anemia (n = 10), fatigue/asthenia/malaise (n = 6) and fever (n = 3). Conclusion : Our data indicate that treatment of chronic hepatitis C with PEG-IFN alfa-2b plus weight-based ribavirin results in favourable treatment outcomes in a Belgian cohort of patients treated in community- based clinical practice. [less ▲]

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See detailHepatitis C genotype 4 response rate to pegylated interferon and ribavirin treatment in Belgium is similar to genotype 1
de Galocsy, C.; Kaufman, L.; Tomasovic, S. et al

in Acta Gastro-Enterologica Belgica (2010), 73

Background and aims : Patients with genotype 4 (G4) chronic hepatitis C from the Middle East respond better to treatment than genotype 1 (G1) patients. There are few data on the response rates to ... [more ▼]

Background and aims : Patients with genotype 4 (G4) chronic hepatitis C from the Middle East respond better to treatment than genotype 1 (G1) patients. There are few data on the response rates to treatment of G4 patients living in Western Europe. Many G4 patients in Belgium originate from Central Africa, and their response to treatment seems lower. Methods : We analysed the data from 2 randomized phase III studies conducted in Belgium, BerNar-1 and BerNar-2, comparing the sustained virological response (SVR) to pegylated interferon and ribavirin of 78 G4 patients (34 Caucasians, 44 Blacks) and 477 G1 patients (455 Caucasians, 12 Blacks), and assessing the predictors of SVR. Results : Baseline characteristics of G4 and G1 patients were similar except mainly for race. Complete early virological response (cEVR) was similar in G4 (73.2%) and G1 (68.1%). cEVR was also similar between Black and Caucasian G4 and between Black and Caucasian G1 patients. Partial early virological response was similar for G4 and G1. SVR was similar for G4 (51.3%) and G1 (51.8%). There was a trend for a higher SVR in Caucasians than in Blacks. In multivariate analysis, the only predictors for SVR were the presence of cirrhosis, HCV viral load, age < 40 vs 40 yrs, and treatment status (relapsers vs naïve). Conclusions : G4 patients in Belgium have the same SVR as G1 patients. It is lower than the SVR described in Arab countries, especially for Black G4 patients. (Acta gastro enterol. belg., 2010, 73, 229-234). [less ▲]

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See detailA randomized, open-label, multicenter study evaluating the efficacy of peginterferon alfa-2a versus interferon alfa-2a, in combination with ribavirin, in naïve and relapsed chronic hepatitis C patients.
Nevens, F.; Van Vlierberghe, H.; D'Heygere, F. et al

in Acta Gastro-Enterologica Belgica (2010), 73

Background/Aims : A large multicenter trial to compare the efficacy of peginterferon alfa-2a with interferon alfa-2a, in combination with ribavirin, in chronic hepatitis C patients. Efficacy data for ... [more ▼]

Background/Aims : A large multicenter trial to compare the efficacy of peginterferon alfa-2a with interferon alfa-2a, in combination with ribavirin, in chronic hepatitis C patients. Efficacy data for prior relapsers are reported because treatment recommendations for this patient population are not well defined. Patients and methods : This study was a multicenter, prospective, randomized clinical trial. The primary efficacy endpoint was sustained virologic response in naïve patients (n = 348) and relapsers (n = 95). Results : Sustained virologic response rates were similar in naïve patients and relapsers, both for non-pegylated and pegylated interferon (respectively 27 and 26% and 54 and 43%). Pegylated interferon given for 48 weeks did not improved the relapse rate : 15.9 and 27.3% for non-pegylated and 16.7 and 30.4% for pegylated interferon, naïve vs relapsers respectively. Stepwise logistic regression analysis revealed a significant association between slow response (detectable HCV RNA at week 12 and undetectable at week 24) and relapse in patients with an end-of-treatment response (55% versus 13% respectively ; p = 0.02 ; odds ratio = 6.07). Conclusions : This trial confirms the value of using peginter - feron alfa-2a in both naïve and relapsed patients and provides support for a more tailored approach to treatment for relapsers and particulary for patients with a slow viral response. (Acta gastro enterol. belg., 2010, 73, 223-228). [less ▲]

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See detailA randomized trial of pegylated-interferon alpha 2a plus ribavirin with or without amantadine in treatment-naïve or relapsing chronic hepatitis C patients
Langlet, P.; D'Heygere, F.; Henrion, J. et al

in Alimentary Pharmacology & Therapeutics (2009), 30

Background The combination therapy of pegylated-interferon-a2a plus ribavirin is considered as the standard of care for patients with chronic hepatitis C. A sustained viral response is obtained in 40–50 ... [more ▼]

Background The combination therapy of pegylated-interferon-a2a plus ribavirin is considered as the standard of care for patients with chronic hepatitis C. A sustained viral response is obtained in 40–50% of naı¨ve patients with genotype 1 and in around 80% of naı¨ve patients with genotype 2 or 3. Aim To assess whether amantadine, added to the conventional combination therapy, could improve the treatment efficacy. Methods In all, 630 patients (intent-to-treat population) with chronic hepatitis C were randomized into two groups: 316 patients (treatment group) received pegylated-interferon-a2a (180 lg once weekly) plus ribavirin (1000–1200 mg⁄ daily) with amantadine (200 mg⁄ daily); 314 patients (control group) received pegylated-interferon-a2a (180 lg once weekly) plus ribavirin (1000–1200 mg⁄ daily) without amantadine. The duration of the treatment was 48 weeks for genotypes 1, 4, 5 and 6, and 24 weeks for genotypes 2 and 3. Results There was no statistically significant difference between treatments groups for any of the variables tested for. Subgroups of patients likely to take advantage of the addition of amantadine were not identified. Conclusions This large study definitely excludes the role of amantadine in addition of conventional combination therapy in the treatment of chronic hepatitis C patients. [less ▲]

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See detailOutcome of patients with hepatocellular carcinoma listed for liver transplantation within the eurotransplant allocation system
Adler, M.; Lerut, J.; Starkel, P. et al

in Journal of Hepatology (2006), 44(Suppl. 2), 14

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See detailLiver failure requiring liver transplantation (LTx) following weight-reduction surgery for morbid obesity
Risha, A.; Van Gheluwe, B.; Donckier, Vincent et al

in Acta Gastro-Enterologica Belgica (2005, January), 68(1), 63

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See detailHépatite C: dépistage, traitement et prévention. Recommandations pratiques-résumé
Brenard, R.; Michielsen, P.; Bourgeois, N. et al

in La Revue de la Medicine Generale (2003), 205

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See detailDaily induction combination treatment with alpha 2b interferon and ribavirin or standard combination treatment in naive chronic hepatitis C patients. A multicentre randomized controlled trial
Van Vlierberghe, H.; Leroux-Roels, G.; Adler, M. et al

in Journal of Viral Hepatitis (2003), 10(6), 460-466

The standard treatment for patients with chronic hepatitis C is a 6-12-month combination therapy with interferon alpha and ribavirin. Induction treatment could result in a faster early decline of the ... [more ▼]

The standard treatment for patients with chronic hepatitis C is a 6-12-month combination therapy with interferon alpha and ribavirin. Induction treatment could result in a faster early decline of the hepatitis C virus (HCV) load and a better response rate. Naive chronically infected HCV patients (n = 454) were randomized into two arms to receive either induction treatment with interferon alpha 2b 5 million units (MU) subcutaneously (s.c.) daily during a period of 8 weeks (arm A); or treatment with interferon alpha 2b 5 MU s.c. three times a week (TIW) for a period of 8 weeks (arm B). After week 8, interferon treatment in both arms was 3 MU s.c. TIW for a total period of 12 months. In both arms, ribavirin (1000-1200 mg orally per day) was added at week 4. Induction treatment resulted in a higher virological response at week 8 of treatment (66%vs 47%; P < 0.01). However, response at the end of treatment and at 6 months follow-up was not different (53%vs 50%, 41%vs 33%). The occurrence of adverse events and the drop-out rate were similar in both arms. Although an early virological response is observed more frequently in the induction treatment, end of treatment response and sustained responses did not differ. [less ▲]

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See detailHepatitis C: screening, treatment and prevention practical guidelines
Michielsen, P.; Brenard, R.; Bourgeois, N. et al

in Acta Gastro-Enterologica Belgica (2003), 66(1), 15-19

The standard treatment for patients with chronic hepatitis C is a 6-12-month combination therapy with interferon alpha and ribavirin. Induction treatment could result in a faster early decline of the ... [more ▼]

The standard treatment for patients with chronic hepatitis C is a 6-12-month combination therapy with interferon alpha and ribavirin. Induction treatment could result in a faster early decline of the hepatitis C virus (HCV) load and a better response rate. Naive chronically infected HCV patients (n = 454) were randomized into two arms to receive either induction treatment with interferon alpha 2b 5 million units (MU) subcutaneously (s.c.) daily during a period of 8 weeks (arm A); or treatment with interferon alpha 2b 5 MU s.c. three times a week (TIW) for a period of 8 weeks (arm B). After week 8, interferon treatment in both arms was 3 MU s.c. TIW for a total period of 12 months. In both arms, ribavirin (1000-1200 mg orally per day) was added at week 4. Induction treatment resulted in a higher virological response at week 8 of treatment (66%vs 47%; P < 0.01). However, response at the end of treatment and at 6 months follow-up was not different (53%vs 50%, 41%vs 33%). The occurrence of adverse events and the drop-out rate were similar in both arms. Although an early virological response is observed more frequently in the induction treatment, end of treatment response and sustained responses did not differ [less ▲]

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See detailOne year experience of the Belgian Liver Intestine Comittee (BLIC) intranet database
Lerut, Jan; Roggen, F.; De Hemptinne, Bernard et al

in Acta Gastro-Enterologica Belgica (2001, January), 64(1), 7

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See detailFactors inftuencing ribavirin-induced hemolysis
Van Vlierberghe, H.; Delanghe, J. R.; De Vos, M. et al

in Journal of Hepatology (2001), 34

BackgroundlAims: One of the major side eft'ects of the combination therapy for chronic hepatitis C is ribavirininduced hemolytic anemia. Little is known about variables inftuencing tbis anemia. Our study ... [more ▼]

BackgroundlAims: One of the major side eft'ects of the combination therapy for chronic hepatitis C is ribavirininduced hemolytic anemia. Little is known about variables inftuencing tbis anemia. Our study tried to search for these variables in a large group of patients with hepatitis C treated with the combination therapy. Methods: Two hundred and forty-four patients chronically infected with the hepatitis C virus were treated either with induction treatment (daily dose ofinterferon) or with a standard treatment (interferon thrice weekly). Both groups received 1000-1200 mg of ribavirin from week 4 until the end of the treatment. The drop in hemoglobin level was defined as the dift'erence between the pretreatment hemoglobin level and the hemoglobin level at week 8. Seventeen variables which could possibly influencê'this drop in hemoglobin level were examined. Results: After multivariate analysis, the drop in hemoglobin level was only significant influenced by pretreatment platelet level, treatment and haptoglobin phenotype. The ribavirin dose did not influence the drop in hemoglobin level or the early virological response. Conclusions: Ribavirin-induced hemolysis is inftuenced by the pretreatment platelet level, the administered amount of a-interferon and the haptoglobin phenotype. A careful search for the minimal dose of ribavirin needed in combination treatment is necessary. [less ▲]

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