What are the European Association for the Study of the Liver diagnostic guidelines for hepatitis C?

Updated: May 10, 2019
  • Author: Nicholas John Bennett, MBBCh, PhD, MA(Cantab), FAAP; Chief Editor: Russell W Steele, MD  more...
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Answer

The European Association for the Study of the Liver updated their Hepatitis C Treatment Guidelines. [5]

The new guidelines include the following:

  • Anti-HCV antibodies are the first-line diagnostic test for HCV infection.

  • In the case of suspected acute hepatitis C or in immunocompromised patients, HCV RNA testing should be part of the initial evaluation.

  • If anti-HCV antibodies are detected, HCV RNA should be determined by a sensitive molecular method.

  • Anti-HCV-positive, HCV RNA-negative individuals should be retested for HCV RNA 3 mo later to confirm true convalescence.

  • Rapid diagnostic tests can be used instead of classical enzyme immunoassays to facilitate anti-HCV antibody screening and improve access to care.

  • If anti-HCV antibodies are detected, HCV RNA should be determined by a sensitive molecular method to identify patients with ongoing infection.

  • HCV RNA detection and quantification should be made by a sensitive assay with a lower limit of detection of ≤15 IU/ml.

See also Pediatric Hepatitis A and Pediatric Hepatitis B.


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