Hepatitis C Virus-infected, HCV-RNA-negative Patients with Bleeding Disorders - Relationship to Age, HIV and Treatment
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All 155 anti-hepatitis C-virus (HCV) positive patients with haemostatic disorders at our unit were tested for HCV-RNA in order to determine the prevalence of a negative result. The patients were also characterized in order to find predictors for a negative HCV-RNA test. The prevalence of a negative HCV-RNA test was 15.5% (24 of 155) and this was similar among anti-HIV positive and negative patients. A common denominator for the 4 HIV-infected, HCV-RNA negative haemophiliacs was treatment with azidothymidin prior to the first test. Among the anti-HIV negative patients, those < 40 y of age had a significantly greater chance of being HCV-RNA-negative than the older ones (27.3 vs 3.6%). They also had a lower consumption of plasma products than age-matched HCV-RNA positive cases. Absence of co-infection with hepatitis B was not correlated with a negative HCV-RNA test. Young age and a low requirement for factor concentrates thus seem to be predictors for a negative HCV-RNA test in patients with bleeding disorders.
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