Current hepatitis B treatment guidelines and future research directions
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- Skupsky, J. & Hu, K. Front. Med. (2014) 8: 145. doi:10.1007/s11684-014-0335-1
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Hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection causes a tremendous clinical burden across the world with more than half a million people dying annually from HBV related disease. Significant advances have been made in HBV treatment in the past decade and several guidelines have been published by professional societies and expert panels. Although these recommendations have been valuable to help optimize HBV treatment, there is discordance in treatment criteria and many patients infected with HBV may fall outside of these recommendations. This paper systematically reviews the natural history of the disease and compares and contrasts the recommendations for initiation of treatment from the various societies. There is also discussion of special groups that require particular consideration and some of the open research questions and future research directions within the field.