Clinical outcome of chronic hepatitis B in children during a long-term follow-up

Maria Grazia Marazzi, A. R. Gigliotti, E. Bondi, M. Palumbo, G. Casalino Finocchio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives. To evaluate the outcome of chronic hepatitis B in patients infected during childhood, over a 25-year period (1974-1999). Methods. We studied 48 patients with chronic hepatitis B, for at least 5 years. The patients were 28 males and 20 females, median age 6.1 years. At the first observation 45 patients were HBeAg+, 1 was HBeAg- HBeAb-, 2 were HBeAb+. One patient had cirrhosis. The patients were followed for an average period of 10 years and 7 months. Steroids and azathioprine were given to 16 of the patients treated from 1974 to 1987, α-IFN to 24 patients treated in the period 1988-1995, steroids and azathioprine and subsequently α-INF to 3 pts.; 5 patients were untreated. Results. Thirty-four of 46 (74%) patients seroconverted from HBeAg to HBeAb and remained stably HBVDNA-negative with normal transaminases during follow-up. Three patients cleared Hepatitis B surface antigen. No clinical worsening was observed in the patient with cirrhosis. During follow-up none of them presented hepatocarcinoma. There was no difference in seroconversion in the three groups of patients treated. Conclusions. In most patients, the outcome of chronic hepatis B presenting in childhood is favourable; a group of patients with persistent liver damage and active viral replication is at risk of disease progression.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)128-132
Number of pages5
JournalItalian Journal of Pediatrics
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2002


  • Children
  • Hepatitis B infection
  • Outcome of hepatitis B

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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