Noninvasive Markers of Liver Fibrosis Are Highly Predictive of Liver-Related Death in a Cohort of HCV-Infected Individuals With and Without HIV Infection

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OBJECTIVES:Noninvasive markers of liver fibrosis correlate with the stage of liver fibrosis, but have not been widely applied to predict liver-related mortality.METHODS:We assessed the ability of two indices of liver fibrosis, aspartate aminotransferase (AST)-to-platelet ratio index (APRI) and Fib-4, and two markers of extracellular matrix metabolism, hyaluronic acid (HA) and YKL40, to predict liver mortality in a prospective cohort of hepatitis C virus (HCV)-infected individuals with and without HIV coinfection. These were compared with two established prognostic scores, the Child–Pugh–Turcotte (CPT) and model of end-stage liver disease (MELD) scores.RESULTS:A total of 303 subjects, of whom 207 were HIV positive at study entry, were followed up for a mean period of 3.1 years. There were 33 deaths due to liver disease. The ability of each test and score to predict 3-year liver mortality was expressed as the area under the receiver operator curve. The area under the receiver operator curve 95% confidence intervals were: HA 0.92 (0.86–0.96), CPT 0.91 (0.79–0.96), APRI 0.88 (0.80–0.93), Fib-4 0.87 (0.77–0.92), MELD 0.84 (71–0.91). In multivariate analyses HA, APRI, and fib-4 were independent predictors of mortality when included in models with MELD or CPT.CONCLUSION:Noninvasive markers of liver fibrosis are highly predictive of liver outcome in HCV-infected individuals with and without HIV coinfection. These markers seem to have a prognostic value independent of CPT and MELD.

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