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Viruses ; 14(2)2022 02 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1715769


A hepatitis C virus (HCV) screening and treatment program was conducted in Hungarian prisons on a voluntary basis. After HCV-RNA testing and genotyping for anti-HCV positives, treatments with direct-acting antiviral agents were commenced by hepatologists who visited the institutions monthly. Patients were supervised by the prisons' medical staff. Data were retrospectively collected from the Hungarian Hepatitis Treatment Registry, from the Health Registry of Prisons, and from participating hepatologists. Eighty-four percent of Hungarian prisons participated, meaning a total of 5779 individuals (28% of the inmate population) underwent screening. HCV-RNA positivity was confirmed in 317/5779 cases (5.49%); 261/317 (82.3%) started treatment. Ninety-nine percent of them admitted previous intravenous drug use. So far, 220 patients received full treatment and 41 patients are still on treatment. Based on the available end of treatment (EOT) + 24 weeks timepoint data, per protocol sustained virologic response rate was 96.8%. In conclusion, the Hungarian prison screening and treatment program, with the active participation of hepatologists and the prisons' medical staff, is a well-functioning model. Through the Hungarian experience, we emphasize that the "test-and-treat" principle is feasible and effective at micro-eliminating HCV in prisons, where infection rate, as well as history of intravenous drug usage, are high.

Antiviral Agents/administration & dosage , Hepacivirus/isolation & purification , Hepatitis C/drug therapy , Adolescent , Adult , Female , Hepacivirus/drug effects , Hepacivirus/genetics , Hepacivirus/immunology , Hepatitis C/blood , Hepatitis C/diagnosis , Hepatitis C/virology , Humans , Hungary , Male , Mass Screening , Middle Aged , Prisons/statistics & numerical data , Retrospective Studies , Sustained Virologic Response , Young Adult
Adv Clin Chem ; 104: 299-340, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-893387


Cryoglobulins consist of serum immunoglobulins that precipitate below 37°C and resolubilize upon warming. The clinical triad of cryoglobulinemia usually includes purpura, weakness, and arthralgia. Cryoglobulinemic syndrome, clinically defined as a systemic vasculitis, is associated with chronic infection with hepatitis C virus (HCV) and autoimmune disorders and can evolve into B-cell malignancies. While the current literature about HCV-associated cryoglobulinemia is not very limited, little is known about the immunologic and serologic profiles of affected patients. Therefore, comprehension of the pathogenetic mechanisms underlying cryoprecipitation could be very helpful. Due to the persistence of viral antigenic stimulation, biomarkers to use after the worsening progression of HCV infection to lymphoproliferative and/or autoimmune diseases are widely needed. Laboratory methods used to detect and characterize low concentrations of cryoprecipitates and immunotyping patterns could improve patient management. The most critical factor affecting cryoglobulin testing is that the pre-analytical phase is not fully completed at 37°C.

Biomarkers/blood , COVID-19/complications , Cryoglobulinemia/blood , Cryoglobulins/analysis , Hepatitis C/physiopathology , Animals , Autoantibodies/blood , Chemical Precipitation , Cryoglobulinemia/therapy , Cryoglobulins/chemistry , Hepatitis C/blood , Humans , Vasculitis/virology