Efficacy of telbivudine compared with entecavir in hepatitis B virus-related cirrhosis: 2 year follow-up data

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Background & Aims: Entecavir (ETV) is effective in the treatment of chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) infections, even in patients with underlying cirrhosis. However, there is little information on the effect of telbivudine (TBV) in chronic hepatitis B patients with cirrhosis.This study compared the antiviral efficacy of TBV and ETV in HBV-related cirrhosis. Methods: We consecutively enrolled 151 treatment-naïve patients with HBV-related cirrhosis who started antiviral therapy with TBV (n = 61) or ETV (n = 90). Results: After 24 months of treatment, per-protocol analysis showed similar virological response rates (HBV DNA <20 IU/ml) in the TBV group (80.6%, 25/31) and in the ETV group (90.2%, 74/82) (P = 0.167). However, intention-to-treat analysis showed lower virological response rates in the TBV group (41.7%, 25/60) than in the ETV group (83.1%, 74/89) (P = 0.001). Mean reduction in HBV DNA levels was greater in the ETV group (-3.72 ± 1.94 vs. -4.87 ± 1.57 respectively, P = 0.001). Serologic and biochemical response rates at month 24 did not differ significantly between the groups. Child-Turcotte-Pugh score was significantly improved after 24 months compared to the pretreatment state without difference between the groups. During 24 months of therapy, 15 patients (27.3%) showed antiviral resistance to TBV while no resistance (0%) was reported in the ETV group (P = 0.001). Conclusions: Compared to ETV, TBV therapy shows lower efficacy in viral suppression and higher risk of antiviral resistance despite comparable effect on improvement of hepatic function for the treatment of HBV-related cirrhosis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)860-869
Number of pages10
JournalLiver International
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Jan 1


  • Cirrhosis
  • Entecavir
  • Hepatitis B
  • Telbivudine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hepatology

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