Publications by authors named "Solomon Obekpa"

3 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Redefining fatty liver disease: an international patient perspective.

Lancet Gastroenterol Hepatol 2021 01 5;6(1):73-79. Epub 2020 Oct 5.

Storr Liver Centre, Westmead Institute for Medical Research, Westmead Hospital and University of Sydney, Westmead, NSW, Australia. Electronic address:

Despite its increased recognition as a major health threat, fatty liver disease associated with metabolic dysfunction remains largely underdiagnosed and undertreated. An international consensus panel has called for the disease to be renamed from non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) to metabolic-associated fatty liver disease (MAFLD) and has suggested how the disease should be diagnosed. This Viewpoint explores the call from the perspective of patient advocacy groups. Patients are well aware of the negative consequences of the NAFLD acronym. This advocacy group enthusiastically endorses the call to reframe the disease, which we believe will ultimately have a positive effect on patient care and quality of life and, through this effect, will reduce the burden on health-care systems. For patients, policy makers, health planners, donors, and non-hepatologists, the new acronym MAFLD is clear, squarely placing the disease as a manifestation of metabolic dysfunction and improving understanding at a public health and patient level. The authors from representative patient groups are supportive of this change, particularly as the new acronym is meaningful to all citizens as well as governments and policy makers, and, above all, is devoid of any stigma.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S2468-1253(20)30294-6DOI Listing
January 2021

Prevalence of Hepatitis B Surface Antigen and Antibodies to Hepatitis C in the General Population of Benue State, Central Nigeria.

Am J Trop Med Hyg 2020 05;102(5):995-1000

Benue State University Teaching Hospital, Makurdi, Nigeria.

There have been various estimates of the prevalence of hepatitis B and C infections in Nigeria. Recent studies have shown the prevalence to be lower than previously reported. The different populations studied might be responsible for this. It is important to have a real population data that would inform the policies to be adopted for eradication. We set out to determine the prevalence, risk factors, and pattern of hepatitis B and C in Benue State, Central Nigeria. Four thousand and five (4,005) subjects, aged 1 year and older, were selected through a multistage random sampling to represent all parts of the state. Trained health workers administered a validated questionnaire. Rapid test kits were standardized and used in determining the prevalence of the respective viruses. Hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) and antibodies to hepatitis C virus (anti-HCV) were found to be positive in 5% and 1%, respectively, of subjects screened. The prevalence varied from one local government area to another, with HBsAg being 8% in the highest to 2% in the lowest LGC, and anti-HCV being 3% in the highest and 0% in the lowest. Age, previous close contact with a patient, and multiple sex partners were the most important risk factors for hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection, whereas age and previous blood transfusion were the most important risk factors for hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection. HBV immunization may be having an impact in reducing the prevalence of the virus. Nigeria appears to be moving from high endemicity to the intermediate one.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4269/ajtmh.19-0649DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7204600PMC
May 2020

Characteristics, management, and outcomes of patients with hepatocellular carcinoma in Africa: a multicountry observational study from the Africa Liver Cancer Consortium.

Lancet Gastroenterol Hepatol 2017 02 3;2(2):103-111. Epub 2016 Dec 3.

Department of Internal Medicine, School of Medical Sciences, Cape Coast, Ghana.

Background: Hepatocellular carcinoma is a leading cause of cancer-related death in Africa, but there is still no comprehensive description of the current status of its epidemiology in Africa. We therefore initiated an African hepatocellular carcinoma consortium aiming to describe the clinical presentation, management, and outcomes of patients with hepatocellular carcinoma in Africa.

Methods: We did a multicentre, multicountry, retrospective observational cohort study, inviting investigators from the African Network for Gastrointestinal and Liver Diseases to participate in the consortium to develop hepatocellular carcinoma research databases and biospecimen repositories. Participating institutions were from Cameroon, Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Sudan, Tanzania, and Uganda. Clinical information-demographic characteristics, cause of disease, liver-related blood tests, tumour characteristics, treatments, last follow-up date, and survival status-for patients diagnosed with hepatocellular carcinoma between Aug 1, 2006, and April 1, 2016, were extracted from medical records by participating investigators. Because patients from Egypt showed differences in characteristics compared with patients from the other countries, we divided patients into two groups for analysis; Egypt versus other African countries. We undertook a multifactorial analysis using the Cox proportional hazards model to identify factors affecting survival (assessed from the time of diagnosis to last known follow-up or death).

Findings: We obtained information for 2566 patients at 21 tertiary referral centres (two in Egypt, nine in Nigeria, four in Ghana, and one each in the Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Sudan, Ethiopia, Tanzania, and Uganda). 1251 patients were from Egypt and 1315 were from the other African countries (491 from Ghana, 363 from Nigeria, 277 from Ivory Coast, 59 from Cameroon, 51 from Sudan, 33 from Ethiopia, 21 from Tanzania, and 20 from Uganda). The median age at which hepatocellular carcinoma was diagnosed significantly later in Egypt than the other African countries (58 years [IQR 53-63] vs 46 years [36-58]; p<0·0001). Hepatitis C virus was the leading cause of hepatocellular carcinoma in Egypt (1054 [84%] of 1251 patients), and hepatitis B virus was the leading cause in the other African countries (597 [55%] of 1082 patients). Substantially fewer patients received treatment specifically for hepatocellular carcinoma in the other African countries than in Egypt (43 [3%] of 1315 vs 956 [76%] of 1251; p<0·0001). Among patients with survival information (605 [48%] of 1251 in Egypt and 583 [44%] of 1315 in other African countries), median survival was shorter in the other African countries than in Egypt (2·5 months [95% CI 2·0-3·1] vs 10·9 months [9·6-12·0]; p<0·0001). Factors independently associated with poor survival were: being from an African countries other than Egypt (hazard ratio [HR] 1·59 [95% CI 1·13-2·20]; p=0·01), hepatic encephalopathy (2·81 [1·72-4·42]; p=0·0004), diameter of the largest tumour (1·07 per cm increase [1·04-1·11]; p<0·0001), log α-fetoprotein (1·10 per unit increase [1·02-1·20]; p=0·0188), Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group performance status 3-4 (2·92 [2·13-3·93]; p<0·0001) and no treatment (1·79 [1·44-2·22]; p<0·0001).

Interpretation: Characteristics of hepatocellular carcinoma differ between Egypt and other African countries. The proportion of patients receiving specific treatment in other African countries was low and their outcomes were extremely poor. Urgent efforts are needed to develop health policy strategies to decrease the burden of hepatocellular carcinoma in Africa.

Funding: None.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S2468-1253(16)30161-3DOI Listing
February 2017
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