Publications by authors named "Tamer M Elbaz"

8 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Liver stiffness measurement changes following hepatocellular carcinoma treatment with percutaneous microwave ablation or transarterial chemoembolization: a cohort study.

Eur J Gastroenterol Hepatol 2019 Jun;31(6):685-691

Endemic Medicine Department.

Background: Liver stiffness increases after the development of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Transient elastography for liver stiffness measurement (LSM) using fibroscan is a simple noninvasive method of proven efficacy. This study aims to assess the changes in LSM following HCC treatment.

Patients And Methods: This study included 150 patients with hepatitis C virus related HCC attending the multidisciplinary HCC clinic, Kasr Al-Ainy Hospital between March 2014 and October 2015 who underwent either transarterial chemoembolization (TACE) or microwave ablation (MWA). Baseline LSM was carried out 3 and 6 months after treatment. The response rate was calculated according to the modified Response Evaluation Criteria in Solid Tumors criteria; overall survival and LSM changes were then compared between the two procedures.

Results: MWA showed higher rates of complete ablation (77.4%) than did TACE (31.7%) (P=0.004). Increase in LSM 3 and 6 months after treatment was statistically significant in the TACE group (P<0.001) but not in the MWA group (P=0.4). Patients who showed complete ablation had statistically significant lower baseline LSM than those with incomplete ablation, and their 6 months increase in LSM was also significantly lower. Logistic regression revealed that with each unit increase in baseline stiffness, 3% reduction in the odds of complete ablation is expected, and this did not change after controlling for the type of treatment. Child-Pugh class, number, and size of HCCs were our independent prognostic factors by Cox proportional analysis.

Conclusion: The increase in LSM is significant after TACE than after MWA. Moreover, lower pre-ablation LSM is a predictor of complete ablation.
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June 2019

Tumor behavior of hepatocellular carcinoma after hepatitis C treatment by direct-acting antivirals: comparative analysis with non-direct-acting antivirals-treated patients.

Eur J Gastroenterol Hepatol 2019 01;31(1):75-79

Endemic Medicine Department.

Introduction: Scarce reports have commented on hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) behavior after direct-acting antivirals (DAAs).

Aim: To analyze differences in tumor behavior between patients with hepatitis C virus (HCV)-induced HCC and were either treated or not using DAAs.

Patients And Methods: This case-control study includes patients with HCV-related HCC who received generic DAAs (group I) and all non-DAA treated patients with HCC who presented to our clinic during the same period (group II). Patient and tumor characteristics, treatment types and outcome were compared between the two groups.

Results: Group I included 89 patients and group II included 207 patients. No significant difference was detected between groups regarding HCC number or size. Group I showed a more infiltrative HCC pattern, whereas group II had more circumscribed and delineated lesions. The incidence of portal vein thrombosis and significant lymphadenopathy was significantly higher in group I (P=0.03 and 0.03, respectively). Serum levels of α-fetoprotein were significantly higher in group I (P=0.02). These factors significantly affected the response to HCC management (P=0.03). Incidence of complete responses were 47.2 and 49.8% for groups I and II, respectively, whereas incomplete responses were 12.4 and 25.1%, respectively. Supportive treatment was applied to 40.4% in group I and 25.1% in group II.

Conclusion: HCC behavior was more aggressive in DAA-treated patients regarding portal vein thrombosis, malignant lymphadenopathy, and HCC imaging characteristics, which affected the chance of ablation and the treatment response.
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January 2019

Evaluation of liver steatosis, measured by controlled attenuation parameter, in patients with hepatitis C-induced advanced liver fibrosis and hepatocellular carcinoma.

Eur J Gastroenterol Hepatol 2018 11;30(11):1384-1388

Department of Hepatology, Gastroenterology and Infectious Diseases, Faculty of Medicine, Benha University, Benha, Egypt.

Introduction: Steatosis is a documented feature of chronic hepatitis C (CHC). There is an association between steatosis decrease and fibrosis progression. The association between steatosis and advanced fibrosis versus hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) development has not been precisely evaluated. The controlled attenuation parameter (CAP) was applied as an immediate and efficient process to detect and quantify hepatic steatosis with adequate accuracy.

Aims: The aim of this study was to assess the difference in liver steatosis between patients with hepatitis C virus-related advanced hepatic fibrosis versus HCC.

Patients And Methods: This cross-sectional study included 130 patients with HCC, attending the multidisciplinary HCC clinic, Cairo University, and 54 patients with CHC between October 2015 and June 2016. Clinical and laboratory characteristics were recorded. Liver stiffness and CAP were obtained by using the FibroScan 502, touch.

Results: All included patients had genotype 4. The mean CAP value was significantly lower in HCC (209.5±57.1 dB/m) versus CHC (259.9±54.9 dB/m). Receiver operating characteristic curve revealed an area under the curve of 0.75 for the differentiation between groups. At a cutoff value of 237 dB/m, sensitivity was 72.3%, specificity was 70.7%, positive likelihood ratio was 2.5, and negative likelihood ratio was 0.4 in the differentiation between CHC versus HCC. Logistic regression analysis revealed an odds ratio of 6.4 for the diagnosis of HCC with CAP of less than 237 dB/m. Multivariate analysis, controlling for age, sex, BMI, triglycerides, and cholesterol levels, revealed a significantly increased odds for HCC diagnosis (odds ratio: 4.3, P=0.006).

Conclusion: The progression of CHC is associated with a decrease in steatosis, particularly toward advanced fibrosis and HCC. Steatosis reduction less than 237 dB/m is likely to be associated with HCC.
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November 2018

A new prognostic score can predict survival after hepatocellular carcinoma treatment in a cohort of 1302 Egyptian hepatocellular carcinoma patients.

Eur J Gastroenterol Hepatol 2018 May;30(5):514-519

Departments of Endemic Medicine and Hepatogastroenterology.

Introduction: Survival of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) differs between regions and countries according to the different underlying factors and the degree of standard of care that enables early diagnosis and management. Our aim was to identify the most potent predictive factors of survival in Egyptian HCC patients receiving curative or palliative treatments.

Patients And Methods: This retrospective study included 1302 HCC patients attending the HCC multidisciplinary clinic, Cairo University, between February 2009 and December 2016. Clinical, laboratory, tumor characteristics, and treatment data were collected. Prognostic scores for each of the treatment categories, curative or palliative, were developed using routine laboratory tests.

Results: Patients were predominantly men, mean age 57.79±7.56 years. All cases developed HCC in addition to cirrhosis, mainly hepatitis C virus-related (88.2%). Most of the patients were Child-Pugh A (56.8%) or B (34.4%) and had single lesions. Transarterial chemoembolization was the most common line of treatment (42.08%). The overall median survival was 18.3 months from the date of diagnosis. Cigarette smoking, Child-Pugh score, performance status, number and size of the focal lesion, α-fetoprotein, and application of a specific treatment, particularly curative treatment, were the significant independent prognostic factors for survival. We found no impact of diabetes mellitus or hypertension on survival. Multidisciplinary HCC clinic predictive scores of survival after palliative and curative treatments were developed including independent prognostic factors, age, and portal vein status.

Conclusion: A new Egyptian prognostic score of tumor and patients factors can predict the survival of patients with HCC after palliative and curative treatments.
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May 2018

De-novo versus recurrent hepatocellular carcinoma following direct-acting antiviral therapy for hepatitis C virus.

Eur J Gastroenterol Hepatol 2018 Jan;30(1):39-43

Departments of Endemic Medicine and Hepato-gastroenterology.

Introduction: A recent appearance of direct-acting antivirals (DAAs) led to a surge in hepatitis C virus (HCV) management. Nowadays, a large proportion of treated patients have cirrhosis with a retained possibility to develop hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) even after complete cure. We aimed to study tumoral differences between patients who developed HCC after DAAs as either a recurrence or de-novo HCC.

Methods: We retrospectively analyzed 89 patients who presented to our HCC multidisciplinary clinic with HCC lesions following DAA therapy. A total of 45 patients had complete response to HCC according to the modified Response Evaluation Criteria in Solid Tumors before DAAs intake. Another 44 patients developed de-novo lesions after DAA treatment. Both groups were compared regarding their baseline characteristics, tumor criteria, response to DAAs as well response to HCC treatment.

Results: Both groups showed no significant difference regarding their baseline characteristics (age, sex, Child-Pugh score, and performance status) or response to DAAs (P=0.5). No significant difference was present between groups according to number, site, and size of lesions. However, time elapsed between the end of DAAs therapy and first diagnosis of HCC was significantly longer in de-novo group (15.22±16.39 months) versus recurrence group (6.76±5.1 months) (P=0.008). In addition, response to ablation was significantly better in de-novo lesions compared with recurrent HCC (P=0.03).

Conclusions: Although de-novo HCC lesions significantly developed later than recurrent lesions in DAAs-treated patients, their response rates were significantly better. No differences were detected between both groups in their response to DAAs and their tumoral characteristics.
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January 2018

Evaluation of trail receptor 1 (DR4) polymorphisms C626G and A683C as risk factors of hepatocellular carcinoma.

J Med Virol 2018 03 20;90(3):490-496. Epub 2017 Oct 20.

Department of Endemic Hepatogastroenterolog, Faculty of Medicine, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt.

Tumor necrosis factor related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL) plays an important role in many cancers including hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). The aim of this study is to investigate the association of the DR4 polymorphisms C626G (Thr209Arg, rs20575) and A683C (Glu228Ala, rs20576) with the occurrence of HCC in Egyptian patients chronically infected with HCV. The study included 80 patients with HCV-related HCC (group 1) and 80 patients with HCV-related liver cirrhosis (group 2) who are naïve to treatment. Clinical and laboratory data were recorded. Genotyping of TRAIL receptor DR4 polymorphism C626G rs20575 and A683C rs20576 SNP was done by Real-Time PCR using taqman probes technology. The mean age of HCC patients was 57.6 ± 8.4 years with 62 patients (77.5%) were males. While group 2 mean age was 49.5 ± 10.29 years with 50% were males. The frequency distribution of rs20575 genotypes showed a statistically significant difference between the two studied groups (P = 0.02), the carriers of the C allele were 2.01 times more likely to develop HCC than the carriers of the G allele (P = 0.003), while no significant difference in rs20576 genotypes distribution was found between the studied groups (P = 0.680). On combining the carriers of C allele of rs20575 and the carriers of A allele of rs20576, a significant difference was detected (P > 0.001) with 2.85 higher risk of HCC development in patients who carried both genetic risk alleles simultaneously. The significant difference in DR4 polymorphisms among HCC and cirrhotic patients suggests their role as potential risk factors of HCC development.
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March 2018

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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February 2017

Nitazoxanide plus pegylated interferon and ribavirin in the treatment of genotype 4 chronic hepatitis C, a randomized controlled trial.

Liver Int 2014 Feb 24;34(2):259-65. Epub 2013 Jul 24.

Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Endemic Medicine Department, Faculty of Medicine, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt.

Background & Aims: Nitazoxanide has been proposed as a novel therapeutic agent for chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) potentiating the effect of interferon and improving sustained virological response rates to up to 80% in genotype 4. This is an independent randomized trial to confirm the efficacy of nitazoxanide in the treatment of chronic hepatitis C genotype 4.

Methods: This was an open-label trial. Treatment-naive genotype 4 HCV patients were recruited: Group 1 received weekly subcutaneous pegylated interferon 160 μg in addition to weight-based ribavirin (1200 mg if ≥ 75 kg and 1000 mg if <75 kg) for 48 weeks, Group 2 received 4 weeks lead-in therapy by nitazoxanide alone (500 mg bid) followed by triple therapy including nitazoxanide, pegylated interferon and ribavirin for a further 48 weeks.

Results: Fifty patients were recruited in each group. Baseline characteristics were similar except for a higher BMI in group 1 (28.5 vs. 26.5, P = 0.01). SVR rates were similar (24/50 (48%) vs. 25/50 (50%) in groups 1 and 2 respectively, P: 0.84). RVR, cEVR and ETR rates were also similar (61% vs. 53% - P:0.4, 70% vs. 72% - P:0.8 and 62% vs. 58% - P:0.6 in groups 1 and 2 respectively). Biochemical response at week 12 was also similar (57% vs. 46% in groups 1 and 2 respectively, P:0.26). Complications were similar except for a higher rate of dyspepsia in the group receiving nitazoxanide (32% vs. 14%, P:0.03).

Conclusion: The addition of nitazoxanide to pegylated interferon and ribavirin does not improve the virological or biochemical response rates in chronic HCV genotype 4.
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February 2014