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Fulminant hepatic failure in leukaemia and choriocarcinoma related to withdrawal of cytotoxic drug therapy.

Authors
  • Galbraith, R M
  • Eddleston, A L
  • Williams, R
  • Zuckerman, A J
Type
Published Article
Journal
Lancet (London, England)
Publication Date
Sep 20, 1975
Volume
2
Issue
7934
Pages
528–530
Identifiers
PMID: 51345
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

In three patients with malignant disease HBsAg was detected in the serum at least 6 months before the development of acute hepatitis type B, which in each case followed a fulminant course to death. It is suggested that suppression of the normal immunological responses to hepatitis-B viral antigens by cytotoxic drug therapy permitted widespread infection of hepatocytes. Subsequently, upon withdrawal of these drugs, recovery of immunocompetence resulted in rapid destruction of all infected hepatocytes and massive liver damage. Screening for HBsAg before cytotoxic drug therapy, careful monitoring of liver function during its withdrawal, and prompt treatment with corticosteroids should abnormalities occur may prevent this unfortunate sequence of events.

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