Which first-line agents are used to treat hepatitis B (HBV) (Hep B)?

Updated: Jun 08, 2021
  • Author: Nikolaos T Pyrsopoulos, MD, PhD, MBA, FACP, AGAF; Chief Editor: BS Anand, MD  more...
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The goals of pharmacotherapy in patients with hepatitis B disease are to reduce the risk of progression of disease, prevent transmission to others, and decrease complications.

Currently, pegylated interferon alfa (PEG-IFN-a), entecavir (ETV), tenofovir disoproxil fumarate (TDF), and tenofovir alafenamide (TAF) are the first-line agents in the treatment of hepatitis B disease. These are the main treatment drugs approved globally for this disease, although ongoing development and clinical trials are investigating new types of medications, such as encapsidation inhibitors, entry inhibitors, TLR7 agonists, and therapeutic vaccines.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends adults at risk for hepatitis B be immunized with hepatitis B vaccine. Hepatitis B vaccine is part of the standard immunization schedule for children.

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