Chronic infection with hepatitis C virus (HCV) affects an estimated 0.1%-2% of the pediatric population in the United States. While the clinical course in young children is indolent, adolescents who contract HCV have a disease course similar to adults, with a 26-fold increased risk of chronic liver disease-associated mortality, hepatocellular carcinoma, and need for curative liver transplantation. Furthermore, adolescent patients are entering childbearing age and carry a risk of passing HCV to their offspring via vertical transmission. Pegylated-interferon (PEG-IFN) with ribavirin was previously the only treatment option for pediatric patients with chronic hepatitis C (CHC), but the high likelihood of adverse reactions and subcutaneous route of administration limited its use and efficacy. Recently, the direct-acting antivirals (DAAs) ledipasvir (LDV) and sofosbuvir (SOF) were approved for adolescents with CHC. This review discusses the natural history of CHC in pediatric patients, data supporting LDV/SOF in adolescents, and ongoing studies evaluating DAAs in pediatric patients.
View details for DOI 10.2147/AHMT.S147896
View details for PubMedID 30104913
View details for PubMedCentralID PMC6071628