Leukopenia and thrombocytopenia in hemodialysis patients with hepatitis B or C virus infection and non-hemodialysis patients with hepatitis cirrhosis

Y. Y. Ng*, C. C. Lin, S. C. Wu, S. J. Hwang, C. H. Ho, W. C. Yang, S. D. Lee

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

Aims: To investigate the relation of leukopenia and thrombocytopenia in hemodialysis (HD) patients with hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection. Materials and methods: The study included 86 HD patients with hepatitis B surface antigen-negative and hepatitis C antibody-negative, 28 HD patients with hepatitis C antibody-positive, 22 HD patients with hepatitis B surface antigen-positive, 78 non-HD patients with hepatitis B-induced liver cirrhosis and 38 non-hemodialysis patients with hepatitis C-induced liver cirrhosis. The following parameters were checked: anti-HCV, hepatitis B surface antigen, hemoglobin, hematocrit, white blood cells, platelets, calcium, phosphate, iron, ferritin, albumin, globulin, aspartate transaminase (AST), alanine transaminase (ALT) and C-reactive protein. The history of blood transfusions, medications, erythropoietin doses and adequate dialysis (KT/V) for 6 consecutive months was also recorded from charts. Results: The HD patients with positive serum anti-HCV and non-HD patients with hepatitis B- or C-induced liver cirrhosis had higher prevalences of leukopenia (39.3%, 43.6% and 50% vs. 15.1%; p < 0.001) and thrombocytopenia (67.9%, 89.7% and 81.6% vs. 34.9%; p < 0.001) than HD patients with serum anti-HCV(-)HbsAg(-). The WBC (4,432 ± 1,394, 4,792 ± 2,263 and 4,624 ± 2,446 vs. 5,590 ± 1,500/mm3; p < 0.001) and platelet counts (140 ± 45, 80 ± 50 and 89 ± 65 vs. 186 ± 62 × 103/mm3; p < 0.001) of HD patients with positive serum anti-HCV and non-HD patients with hepatitis B- or C-induced cirrhosis were also lower than HD patients without anti-HCV antibody. The liver cirrhosis patients had more thrombocytopenia than the HD patients with anti-HCV(+). The WBC and platelet counts did not vary between HD patients with HbsAg(+) and HD patients with anti-HCV(-)HBsAg(-). The durations of HD, hepatitis and liver cirrhosis were not related to the leukopenia or thrombocytopenia (p > 0.05). Conclusions: HCV infection associated with leukopenia and/or thrombocytopenia in HD patients is as common as in non-HD patients with liver cirrhosis. This may be due to the direct effect of hemopoiesis rather than the hyperspleenism of liver cirrhosis patients. There is a need for further prospective investigation to ascertain the clinical significance of leukopenia and thrombocytopenia in HD patients with anti-HCV(+). The prevalence of leukopenia and thrombocytopenia was higher in HD patients with hepatitis C than in HD patients with hepatitis B and HD patient without hepatitis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)289-295
Number of pages7
JournalClinical Nephrology
Volume57
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - 2002

Keywords

  • Hemodialyssi
  • Hepatitis C virus
  • Leukopenia
  • Liver cirrhosis
  • Thrombo-cytopenia

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