Autoimmune hepatitis (AIH) is an uncommon disease occurring mainly in women and characterised by the morphological changes of interface hepatitis on liver biopsy, hypergammaglobulinemia, elevated serum aminotransferases, and circulating autoantibodies. AIH is thought to have a basis in aberrant outoreactivity to hepatocyte antigens in genetically predisposed individuals. AIH is notably heterogeneous with respect to its clinical expression and laboratory features and patients may present without obvious clinical evidence of liver disease or with an acute hepatitis. Corticosteroids alone or in conjunction with azathioprine are the treatment of choice and result in remission induction in over 90% of patients. Sustained response to therapy may result in substantial regression of fibrosis even in advanced cases. Rapid withdrawal of immunosuppression is associated with high risk of disease relapse in many patients. Alternative strategies in patients who have failed to achieve remission on "standard therapy" include the use of cyclosporine. Liver transplantation is the treatment of choice in managing patients with decompensated disease unresponsive to "rescue" medical treatment.
|Translated title of the contribution||Autoimmune hepatitis: Fifty years after|
|Number of pages||10|
|Journal||Medico e Bambino|
|Publication status||Published - May 31 2002|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health