Background: Fibrosing cholestatic hepatitis C (FCH-C) is a rare entity that occurs among immune-compromised patients resulting from the direct hepatotoxicity of a high intracellular viral load along with an ineffective immune system ultimately leading to a fatal outcome. We have describes herein 4 renal transplant recipients who were diagnosed with FCH-C at our institution in the last 8 months. Methods: Four renal transplant recipients presented with jaundice and deteriorating liver function tests. They were diagnosed to display FCH-C based on the presence of hepatitis C virus (HCV) RNA and characteristic liver biopsy findings; there was no evidence of any other cause of cholestasis or biliary obstruction. Results: The patients were men of ages 40, 25, 20, and 27 years. The durations after transplantation were 1.5, 10, 1.5 and 2.0 years, respectively. In all cases pretransplantation screening was negative for HCV antibody, HCV RNA, and hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg). All 4 patients were infected with genotype 1, whereas case 2 had coinfection with type 3. Cases 1 and 2 who were treated with interferon and ribavirin, showed improvement in cholestasis but did not achieve a rapid virological response. Case 1 developed graft dysfunction secondary to acute cellular rejection at 4 months after initiation of interferon treatment, which was treated with pulse steroids. Interferon-based therapy was stopped prematurely in both cases due to pancytopenia. Case 3 developed florid pyelonephritis and died without receiving therapy for hepatitis C. Case 4 was managed conservatively by decreasing the immunosuppression with regular monitoring. Conclusion: FCH-C is difficult to treat and shows high morbidity and mortality rates. Treatment is associated with a risk of graft rejection.
|Number of pages||4|
|Publication status||Published - Apr 2012|