Lay Summaries - Volume 1 Issue 2

Lay Summary: First-generation migrants of Ghanaian, Turkish and African-Surinamese origin were at increased risk of chronic hepatitis B infection, with most infections occurring in older individuals and males. Since over 40% of people were unaware of their chronic hepatitis B infection, screening of these migrant groups is urgently needed. The proportion of first-generation migrants chronically infected with hepatitis C virus was very low among all groups studied.
Lay Summary: The World Health Organization’s goal to eliminate viral hepatitis as a public health threat by 2030 requires global action. Our results indicate that progress is being made by countries to scale-up national planning efforts; however, our results also highlight important gaps in current policies.
Lay Summary: The insertion of a transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt (TIPS) in patients with refractory ascites should be considered in patients with moderate decompensation and not as a last resort, as lower paracentesis frequency and creatinine levels pre-TIPS are associated with superior ascites control. In turn, failure to control ascites seems to be the only predictor of liver transplantation and death.
Lay Summary: Herein, we show that patients with hepatitis C virus infection (HCV) have higher spleen stiffness and portal pressure than patients with alcohol-related liver disease (ALD), within the same fibrosis stage and matched to liver stiffness. Thus, the spleen stiffness to liver stiffness ratio is significantly higher in patients with HCV compared to ALD. Additionally, patients with HCV more commonly progress to portal hypertension-related complications (e.g. variceal bleeding), while patients with ALD more commonly progress to liver failure (e.g. jaundice). The spleen stiffness to liver stiffness ratio is a useful tool to confirm disease etiology and predict disease-specific complications.
Lay Summary: Malnutrition and poor muscle strength are common in liver disease and often get worse while patients await liver transplant. Terlipressin is a medication used to treat portal hypertension in patients with hepatorenal syndrome. It is usually given for a few days or weeks in patients confined to hospital. Our centre provides outpatient terlipressin for weeks to months as a bridge to liver transplant. In patients treated with terlipressin at our hospital, we observed a substantial increase in their dietary intake and muscle strength, which may improve their quality of life and outcomes after liver transplant.