Benign and malignant hematological manifestations of chronic hepatitis C virus infection

Shiksha Kedia, Vijaya Raj Bhatt, Sandeep Kumar Rajan, Pavan Kumar Tandra, Radwa A. El Behery, Mojtaba Akhtari

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection, that affects 3% of world’s population, is associated with several hematological manifestations mainly benign cytopenias, coagulopathy and lymphoproliferative diseases. Immune or non-immune-mediated thrombocytopenia is a major challenge in chronic HCV infected patients especially in the setting of an advanced liver disease, with average prevalence of nearly 24%. Although several treatment modalities such as steroids, intravenous immunoglobulin, splenectomy and immunosuppresants have been tried with some success, their efficacy is not impressive and can result in an increase in viral load or other thrombotic complications. Even though a recent phase 2 study has shown promising role of a platelet growth factor, eltrombopag, in boosting platelets counts prior to antiviral treatment, its use in pre-operative setting had unexpected complications. Unlike thrombocytopenia, anemia and neutropenia are more frequently seen in treated patients and are often the result of antiviral therapy. HCV infection also pre-disposes to lymphoproliferative diseases, mainly non-Hodking’s lymphomas, likely as a result of chronic antigenic stimulation and mutation of several genes involved in carcinogenesis. Understanding of the role of HCV infection in these conditions has therapeutic implications. Whereas antiviral therapy has shown therapeutic role in HCV-associated indolent lymphomas, monitoring of hepatic function and viral load is important in the management of diffuse large B-cell lymphoma in HCV-infected patients. Although our knowledge about the HCV infection and hematological manifestations has substantially grown in last few decades, further studies are important to advance our therapeutic approach.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)179-192
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Preventive Medicine
StatePublished - Dec 2014


  • Anemia
  • Bone marrow abnormality
  • Hepatitis C virus
  • Lymphoproliferative disorders
  • Neutropenia
  • Thrombocytopenia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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