BACKGROUND: The objective was to examine the role of a sustained virological response (SVR) on major adverse cardiovascular events (MACEs) in patients with compensated hepatitis C virus (HCV) cirrhosis.
METHODS: Patients with the following criteria were enrolled in 35 French centers: (1) biopsy-proven HCV cirrhosis; (2) Child-Pugh A; (3) positive viremia; and (4) no prior liver complication, and then prospectively followed. All patients received HCV treatment after inclusion. MACEs included stroke, myocardial infarction, ischemic heart disease, heart failure, peripheral arterial disease, cardiac arrest, and cardiovascular death. SVR, defined as negative viremia 12 weeks posttreatment, was considered as a time-dependent covariate, and its effect on MACE occurrence was assessed. The median follow up was 57.5 months, ending in December 2015.
RESULTS: Sixty-two of 878 (7.1%) patients presented a total of 79 MACEs. The main predictive baseline factors of MACEs were Asian ethnic origin, history of MACEs, arterial hypertension, diabetes mellitus, current smoking, low serum albumin level, high total bilirubin level, and low platelet count. In multivariate analysis, SVR was associated with a decreased risk of MACEs (hazard ratio=0.35, 95% CI 0.09-0.97, P=.044), whereas Asian ethnic origin, arterial hypertension, smoking, and low serum albumin level remained predictive of MACE occurrence. The 5-year survival rate was 60.1% versus 87.5% in patients who did versus those who did not present a MACE (P<.001).
CONCLUSIONS: In patients with compensated HCV-related cirrhosis, Asian ethnic origin, arterial hypertension, smoking, and low serum albumin are independent predictive factors of cardiovascular events, whereas an SVR is associated with a decreased rate of cardiovascular events.