Hepatitis C Virus Epidemiology, Pathogenesis, Diagnosis, and Natural History

  • Author: Francesco Negro, MD (More Info)
  • Editors In Chief: Stefan Zeuzem, MD
  • Last Reviewed: 10/30/20 (What's New)


  • Chronic HCV infection is a progressive disease, taking decades to reach the final stage of cirrhosis, which may evolve toward liver failure or HCC (~ 2% to 4% yearly) (Figure 5)
  • The most important factor influencing liver disease progression is the extent of intrahepatic inflammation elicited by HCV (Table 10)[Leandro 2006]
    • Patients with persistently normal ALT exhibit slow liver disease progression[Mathurin 1998]

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