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Role of lower dose hepatitis B immune globulin prophylaxis in liver transplantation: A single center perspective
1Department of Internal Medicine, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, USA
2Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Transplant Hepatology, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, USA
3Department of Pharmacy, Johns Hopkin Hospital, Baltimore, MD, USA
4Department of Anesthesiology, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, USA
5Division of Transplant Surgery, Department of Surgery, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, USA
Hepatology Forum 2023; 1(4): 3-6 DOI: 10.14744/hf.2022.2022.0030
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Abstract

Background and Aim: Prevention of hepatitis B virus (HBV) reinfection is important for long-term outcomes following liver transplantation (LT). Hepatitis B immunoglobulin (HBIG) is used among recipients who have (i) native HBV disease, (ii) hepatitis B core antibody positivity (HBcAb positivity), or (iii) received HBcAb positive organs. Nucleos(t)ide analogue (NA) monotherapy is emerging for treating patients in this setting. There is no generalized consensus on the ideal dosage of HBIG. The aim of this study was to evaluate the efficacy of low-dose HBIG (1560 international unit [IU]) for post-LT HBV prevention.
Material and Methods: HBcAb positive patients who received either HBcAb positive or hepatitis B core antibody negative (HBcAb negative) organs and HBcAb negative patients who received HBcAb positive organs between January 2016 and December 2020 were reviewed. Pre-LT HBV serologies were collected. HBV-prophylaxis strategy included NA with/without HBIG. HBV recurrence was defined as HBV deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) positivity during the 1-year, post-LT follow-up. No HBV surface antibody titers were followed.
Results: A total of 103 patients with a median age of 60 years participated in the study. Hepatitis C virus was the most common etiology. Thirty-seven HBcAb negative recipients and 11 HBcAb positive recipients with undetectable HBV DNA received HBcAb positive organs and underwent prophylaxis with 4 doses of low-dose HBIG and NA. None of the recipients in our cohort had a recurrence of HBV at 1 year.
Conclusion: Low-dose HBIG (1560 IU) × 4 days and NA, for HBcAb positive recipients and HBcAb positive donors, appear to be effective in preventing HBV reinfection during the post-LT period. Further trials are needed to confirm this observation.