Chronic hepatitis B infection progresses from an asymptomatic persistently infected state to chronic hepatitis, cirrhosis, decompensated liver disease, and/or hepatocellular carcinoma. About 3% of patients with chronic hepatitis develop cirrhosis yearly, and about 5% of individuals with hepatitis B cirrhosis become decompensated annually. The outcome for patients with decompensated cirrhosis is bleak. Lamivudine, the first oral antiviral agent available for hepatitis B treatment is safe and effective and can improve or stabilize liver disease in patients with advanced cirrhosis and viraemia. Viral resistance restricts its prolonged use. Entecavir and tenofovir are newer agents with excellent resistance profile to date. These and some other antiviral agents are being investigated for optimal use in this rather challenging patient group.
Guan, R., & Lui, H. F. (2011). Treatment of Hepatitis B in Decompensated Liver Cirrhosis. International Journal of Hepatology, 2011, 1–11. https://doi.org/10.4061/2011/918017