STUDY Abstract: FRI-368 Long-term immunological and clinical impact of HCV eradication with direct-acting antivirals in patients with HCV-associated cryoglobulinemia vasculitis – M. Bonacci, et al.
Study Aims and Results: The goal of this Spanish study was to evaluate the long-term impact of direct-acting antiviral (DAAs) in patients with HCV-related symptomatic or asymptomatic cryoglobulinemia (cryo). This study enrolled 94 patients, of which 50 had symptomatic and 44 had asymptomatic cryo.
Conclusions: Although this study found that patients who were treated for HCV experienced significant improvements in both clinical and immunological response, cryo persisted in more than 20% of patients for 2 years after HCV elimination. Cryo relapses also occurred. No patients with asymptomatic cryo developed symptomatic cryo during follow-up. Researchers recommended a longer monitoring period for these patients.
Editorial Comments: Although this is a small study, I think it is valuable. Approximately 40% to 60% of patients with chronic HCV have circulating cryoglobulins, symptomatic cryo (vasculitis) is only observed in about 10% of HCV patients. Two features of this study stand out:
- No one with asymptomatic cryo developed symptomatic cryo during follow-up. This adds more evidence to the long-term benefits of HCV treatment.
- Perhaps this study offers insight into why some patients continue to have medical problems after HCV treatment. I hope we see more research on this subject.