Effect of Entecavir and Tenofovir Treatment on Noninvasive Fibrosis Scores: Which One Is Better?

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Abstract

Liver biopsy is the best method for detecting fibrosis grade of the liver in chronic hepatitis B. However, the invasiveness of liver biopsy complicates its routine use in follow-up of treatment. We planned to determine the usage of fibrosis predicting noninvasive scores in the follow-up of the treatment of patients with chronic hepatitis B treated with entecavir or tenofovir. Two hundred twenty-eight patients with hepatitis B with liver biopsy were included in the study. Fibrosis grade was determined by Ishak score. The laboratory data at months 0, 12, and 24 during treatment were collected and noninvasive fibrosis scores (aspartate aminotransferase to alanine aminotransferase ratio [AAR], aspartate aminotransferase to platelet ratio index [APRI], fibrosis index based on the 4 factors [FIB-4] and red cell distribution width to platelet ratio [RPR]) were calculated. Statistically significant increase in all scores and decrease in platelet count were observed as the fibrosis level increased. For differentiation of patients with fibrosis ≥grade 2, the highest sensitivity and specificity rates were shown by APRI score (sensitivity 67%, specificity 69%, and cutoff ≥0.5). FIB-4 was the most successful score for differentiation of patients with fibrosis ≥grade 3 (sensitivity 83%, specificity 74%, and cutoff ≥1.45). A significant decrease in all noninvasive fibrosis scores was observed at months 12 and 24 during treatment with both entecavir and tenofovir (P < 0.001). Among these, only the improvement in APRI score was found better in entecavir group with statistical significance (P < 0.05). APRI score was effective in demonstrating early-stage fibrosis. FIB-4, RPR, and platelet count were better in demonstrating advanced fibrosis. Although noninvasive scores cannot replace liver biopsy for diagnosis, they can be used for monitoring the response to treatment.

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