Publication
Title
Epidemiology and treatment of autoimmune hepatitis
Author
Abstract
Autoimmune hepatitis (AIH) is a chronic inflammatory disease of the liver that occurs worldwide with a low and probably underestimated prevalence. Although it typically affects young and middle-aged women, it can occur in both sexes and across all age groups. AIH runs a fluctuating course, but can present as severe and even fulminant hepatic failure or at a stage of advanced fibrosis or cirrhosis. Prognosis of severe AIH is poor if untreated. The pathogenesis is complex, combining environmental factors (external chemical or infectious triggers) and host genetic susceptibility. The diagnosis is based, after exclusion of other etiologies of chronic liver disease, on a combination of different elements, including the presence of elevated transaminases, elevated immunoglobulin G (IgG) levels, the presence and pattern of typical autoantibodies, and a liver biopsy showing interface hepatitis and other characteristic features. No single test can be used to make the diagnosis. Response to treatment can also help to establish the diagnosis. Simplified criteria can be used to make a bedside diagnosis with relatively high accuracy. Treatment consists of corticosteroids or other immunosuppressive regimens according to the severity of the disease, the response to the treatment, and the tolerance to therapy, with liver transplantation as an ultimate remedy in treatment-resistant cases with liver decompensation.
Language
English
Source (journal)
Hepatic medicine : evidence and research / Dove Medical Press Ltd. - Auckland, NZ, 2009, currens
Publication
Auckland, NZ : Dove Medical Press, 2012
ISSN
1179-1535
Volume/pages
4(2012), p. 1-10
Full text (Publisher's DOI)
Full text (open access)
UAntwerpen
Faculty/Department
Research group
Publication type
Subject
Affiliation
Publications with a UAntwerp address
External links
Record
Identification
Creation 10.04.2013
Last edited 12.03.2017
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