Quality of life of hepatitis B virus surface antigen-positive patients with suppressed viral replication: comparison between inactive carriers and nucleot(s)ide analog-treated patients

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Hepatitis B virus infection is a relevant health problem with more than 400 million infected people worldwide. Our aim was to analyze quality of life of hepatitis B virus surface antigen-positive patients in inactive status or treated with antivirals.

Patients and methods

Patients referred to our center between February and October 2016 were prospectively enrolled. Half-structured interview was used for examining psychological symptoms and Illness Behavior Questionnaire for exploring attitudes toward illness. We used World Health Organization Quality of Life-short version survey for studying quality of life and logistic regression to find possible predictors of nonadequate quality of life.


The study involved 102 patients. At Illness Behavior Questionnaire test, psychological perception of illness (21.6%), and denial of illness itself (13.7%) were the most frequent conditions. Inactive and treated subgroups were comparable for almost all variables and scores, but patients on treatment were significantly more often male, older, and cirrhotic. Sleep disturbance emerged as an independent predictor of inadequate quality of life in Physical health, anxiety in Social relationship, and both anxiety and hostility in Environmental health domain.


Inactive carriers and patients on treatment showed the same global quality of life, but the second group was older and more frequently with an advanced liver disease. Further studies might specifically evaluate the impact of antiviral therapy on quality of life.

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