BACKGROUND & AIMS:
Treatment with direct-acting antiviral (DAA) agents can reduce Model for End-Stage Liver Disease and Child-Pugh-Turcotte (CPT) scores in patients with decompensated cirrhosis caused by hepatitis C virus. However, many of these patients still die or require liver transplantation. We collected data on baseline features of patients and aimed to develop a scoring system to predict response to DAA therapy.
We performed a retrospective analysis of data from 4 trials on the effects of sofosbuvir-based therapy in patients with hepatitis C virus-associated decompensated cirrhosis (502 of CPT class B and 120 of CPT class C). In these trials, patients were given 12 or 24 weeks of treatment with ledipasvir, sofosbuvir, and ribavirin or velpatasvir, sofosbuvir, and/or ribavirin, or 48 weeks of treatment with sofosbuvir and ribavirin. We collected demographic, clinical, treatment response, and laboratory data from patients and tested their associations with patient outcomes at 36 weeks. The primary outcome was factors associated with reduction of CPT score to class A.
The presence of ascites or encephalopathy, serum level of albumin <3.5 g/dL or alanine aminotransferase <60 U/L, and body mass index >25 kg/m2 were associated with an increased risk of not achieving a reduction in CPT to class A, independent of sustained viral response to therapy. Serum level of albumin <2.8 g/dL and abnormal level of bilirubin were associated with an increased risk of liver transplantation or death. We developed a scoring system based on 5 baseline factors (body mass index, encephalopathy, ascites, and serum levels of alanine aminotransferase and albumin) associated significantly with patient outcomes, which we called the "BE3A score." For patients with scores of 4-5, the hazard ratio for reduction of CPT score to class A was 52.3 (95% confidence interval, 15.2-179.7).
We identified 5 baseline factors (body mass index, encephalopathy, ascites, and serum levels of alanine aminotransferase and albumin) associated with a reduction of CPT score to class A in patients with hepatitis C virus-associated decompensated cirrhosis receiving DAA therapy. We developed a predictive score using these factors, called the BE3A score, which can be used as a shared decision-making tool, quantifying the potential benefits of DAA therapy for patients with decompensated cirrhosis.