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  1. Devarbhavi H, Aithal G, Treeprasertsuk S, Takikawa H, Mao Y, Shasthry SM, et al.
    Hepatol Int, 2021 Feb 27.
    PMID: 33641080 DOI: 10.1007/s12072-021-10144-3
    Idiosyncratic drug-induced liver injury mimics acute and chronic liver disease. It is under recognized and underrecognised because of the lack of pathognomonic diagnostic serological markers. Its consequences may vary from being asymptomatic to self-limiting illness to severe liver injury leading to acute liver failure. Its incidence is likely to be more common in Asia than other parts of the world, mainly because of hepatotoxicity resulting from the treatment of tuberculosis disease and the ubiquitous use of traditional and complimentary medicines in Asian countries. This APASL consensus guidelines on DILI is a concise account of the various aspects including current evidence-based information on DILI with special emphasis on DILI due to antituberculosis agents and traditional and complementary medicine use in Asia.
  2. Cueto J, Burch VC, Adnan NA, Afolabi BB, Ismail Z, Jafri W, et al.
    Educ Health (Abingdon), 2006 Jul;19(2):207-22.
    PMID: 16831802
    Undergraduate medical training program accreditation is practiced in many countries, but information from developing countries is sparse. We compared medical training program accreditation systems in nine developing countries, and compared these with accreditation practices in the United States of America (USA).
  3. Mohamed R, Desmond P, Suh DJ, Amarapurkar D, Gane E, Guangbi Y, et al.
    J Gastroenterol Hepatol, 2004 Sep;19(9):958-69.
    PMID: 15304110
    The Asia-Pacific Expert Committee on Hepatitis B Management recently reviewed the impact of hepatitis B in the region and assessed the differences and similarities observed in the practical management of the disease in individual Asia-Pacific countries. Hepatitis B is a major health concern in the Asia-Pacific region, and of all chronically infected carriers worldwide, approximately 75% are found in Asia. The disease poses a considerable burden on healthcare systems, and is likely to remain a cause of substantial morbidity and mortality for several decades. Disease prevention activities, including screening and vaccination programs, have been implemented successfully in some Asia-Pacific countries and similar measures are being established in other parts of the region. The management of hepatitis B in the Asia-Pacific varies throughout the region, with each country confronting different issues related to treatment options, disease monitoring and duration of therapy. The influence of cost, availability of diagnostic equipment, and patient awareness and compliance are of additional concern. Although guidelines such as those developed by the Asian Pacific Association for the Study of the Liver have been created to address problems encountered in the management of hepatitis B, many physicians in the region still find it difficult to make satisfactory management decisions because of the treatment choices available. This article examines the different approaches to hepatitis B management in a number of Asia-Pacific countries, and highlights the difficulties that can arise when adhering to treatment guidelines and disease prevention solutions that have proved to be successful in the region.
  4. Liaw YF, Kao JH, Piratvisuth T, Chan HL, Chien RN, Liu CJ, et al.
    Hepatol Int, 2012 Jun;6(3):531-61.
    PMID: 26201469 DOI: 10.1007/s12072-012-9365-4
    Large volume of new data on the natural history and treatment of chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection have become available since 2008. These include further studies in asymptomatic subjects with chronic HBV infection and community-based cohorts, the role of HBV genotype/naturally occurring HBV mutations, the application of non-invasive assessment of hepatic fibrosis and quantitation of HBV surface antigen and new drug or new strategies towards more effective therapy. To update HBV management guidelines, relevant new data were reviewed and assessed by experts from the region, and the significance of the reported findings was discussed and debated. The earlier "Asian-Pacific consensus statement on the management of chronic hepatitis B" was revised accordingly. The key terms used in the statement were also defined. The new guidelines include general management, indications for fibrosis assessment, time to start or stop drug therapy, choice of drug to initiate therapy, when and how to monitor the patients during and after stopping drug therapy. Recommendations on the therapy of patients in special circumstances, including women in childbearing age, patients with antiviral drug resistance, concurrent viral infection, hepatic decompensation, patients receiving immune suppression or chemotherapy and patients in the setting of liver transplantation and hepatocellular carcinoma, are also included.
  5. Sarin SK, Kumar M, Lau GK, Abbas Z, Chan HL, Chen CJ, et al.
    Hepatol Int, 2016 Jan;10(1):1-98.
    PMID: 26563120 DOI: 10.1007/s12072-015-9675-4
    Worldwide, some 240 million people have chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV), with the highest rates of infection in Africa and Asia. Our understanding of the natural history of HBV infection and the potential for therapy of the resultant disease is continuously improving. New data have become available since the previous APASL guidelines for management of HBV infection were published in 2012. The objective of this manuscript is to update the recommendations for the optimal management of chronic HBV infection. The 2015 guidelines were developed by a panel of Asian experts chosen by the APASL. The clinical practice guidelines are based on evidence from existing publications or, if evidence was unavailable, on the experts' personal experience and opinion after deliberations. Manuscripts and abstracts of important meetings published through January 2015 have been evaluated. This guideline covers the full spectrum of care of patients infected with hepatitis B, including new terminology, natural history, screening, vaccination, counseling, diagnosis, assessment of the stage of liver disease, the indications, timing, choice and duration of single or combination of antiviral drugs, screening for HCC, management in special situations like childhood, pregnancy, coinfections, renal impairment and pre- and post-liver transplant, and policy guidelines. However, areas of uncertainty still exist, and clinicians, patients, and public health authorities must therefore continue to make choices on the basis of the evolving evidence. The final clinical practice guidelines and recommendations are presented here, along with the relevant background information.
  6. Anand L, Choudhury A, Bihari C, Sharma BC, Kumar M, Maiwall R, et al.
    Hepatology, 2019 08;70(2):587-596.
    PMID: 30113706 DOI: 10.1002/hep.30205
    Autoimmune hepatitis (AIH) is considered less common in the Asia Pacific region. Due to this, AIH flare as a cause of acute on chronic liver failure (ACLF) is often overlooked and treatment delayed. We aimed at the defining clinical and histopathological spectrum and role of steroid therapy in AIH-ACLF. Patients with AIH-ACLF, prospectively recruited and followed between 2012 and 2017, were analyzed from the Asian Pacific Association for the Study of the Liver ACLF Research Consortium (AARC) data base. Diagnosis of AIH was confirmed using International Autoimmune Hepatitis Group score or simplified AIH score with histopathological evidence. Of 2,825 ACLF patients, 82 (2.9%) fulfilled criteria of AIH (age 42.1 ± 18.1 years, 70% female). At baseline, mean bilirubin was 18.6 ± 8.2 mg/dL, Child-Turcotte-Pugh score was 11.7 ± 1.4, and Model for End-Stage Liver Disease (MELD) score was 27.6 ± 6.5. Mean immunoglobulin G was 21.61 ± 7.32 g/dL, and this was elevated ≥1.1 times in 97% of cases; 49% were seronegative. Liver histology was available in 90%, with median histological activity index of 10 (interquartile range, 7-12); 90% with moderate to severe interface activity; 56% showing significant parenchymal necrosis (bridging and confluent necrosis); and cirrhosis in 42%. Twenty-eight (34%) patients received steroid therapy and showed shorter intensive care unit (ICU) stay (median 1.5 versus 4 days, P < 0.001) and improved 90-day survival (75% versus 48.1%, P = 0.02) with comparable incidence of sepsis (P = 0.32) compared to those who did not. Patients of advanced age, more severe liver disease (MELD >27; 83.3% sensitivity, 78.9% specificity, area under the receiver operating characteristic curve 0.86), presence of hepatic encephalopathy, and fibrosis grade ≥F3 had an unfavorable response to corticosteroid therapy. Conclusion: AIH presenting as ACLF is not uncommon in Asian patients; a low threshold for liver biopsy is needed to confirm the diagnosis as nearly half the patients are seronegative; early stratification to steroid therapy or liver transplantation (MELD >27, hepatic encephalopathy in ≥F3) would reduce ICU stay and improve outcomes.
  7. Choudhury A, Jindal A, Maiwall R, Sharma MK, Sharma BC, Pamecha V, et al.
    Hepatol Int, 2017 Sep;11(5):461-471.
    PMID: 28856540 DOI: 10.1007/s12072-017-9816-z
    BACKGROUND AND AIMS: Acute-on-chronic liver failure (ACLF) is a progressive disease associated with rapid clinical worsening and high mortality. Early prediction of mortality and intervention can improve patient outcomes. We aimed to develop a dynamic prognostic model and compare it with the existing models.

    METHODS: A total of 1402 ACLF patients, enrolled in the APASL-ACLF Research Consortium (AARC) with 90-day follow-up, were analyzed. An ACLF score was developed in a derivation cohort (n = 480) and was validated (n = 922).

    RESULTS: The overall survival of ACLF patients at 28 days was 51.7%, with a median of 26.3 days. Five baseline variables, total bilirubin, creatinine, serum lactate, INR and hepatic encephalopathy, were found to be independent predictors of mortality, with AUROC in derivation and validation cohorts being 0.80 and 0.78, respectively. AARC-ACLF score (range 5-15) was found to be superior to MELD and CLIF SOFA scores in predicting mortality with an AUROC of 0.80. The point scores were categorized into grades of liver failure (Gr I: 5-7; II: 8-10; and III: 11-15 points) with 28-day cumulative mortalities of 12.7, 44.5 and 85.9%, respectively. The mortality risk could be dynamically calculated as, with each unit increase in AARC-ACLF score above 10, the risk increased by 20%. A score of ≥11 at baseline or persisting in the first week was often seen among nonsurvivors (p = 0.001).

    CONCLUSIONS: The AARC-ACLF score is easy to use, dynamic and reliable, and superior to the existing prediction models. It can reliably predict the need for interventions, such as liver transplant, within the first week.

  8. Choudhury A, Kumar M, Sharma BC, Maiwall R, Pamecha V, Moreau R, et al.
    J Gastroenterol Hepatol, 2017 Dec;32(12):1989-1997.
    PMID: 28374414 DOI: 10.1111/jgh.13799
    BACKGROUND AND AIM: Systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS) is an early marker of sepsis and ongoing inflammation and has been reported in large proportion of acute-on-chronic liver failure (ACLF) patients. Whether sepsis is the cause or the result of liver failure is unclear and is vital to know. To address this, the study investigated the course and outcome of ACLF patients without SIRS/sepsis.

    METHODS: Consecutive ACLF patients were monitored for the development of SIRS/sepsis and associated complications and followed till 90 days, liver transplant or death.

    RESULTS: Of 561 patients, 201 (35.8%) had no SIRS and 360 (64.2%) had SIRS with or without infection. New onset SIRS and sepsis developed in 74.6% and 8% respectively in a median of 7 (range 4-15) days, at a rate of 11% per day. The cumulative incidence of new SIRS was 29%, 92.8%, and 100% by days 4, 7, and 15. Liver failure, that is, bilirubin > 12 mg/dL (odds ratio [OR] = 2.5 [95% confidence interval {CI} = 1.05-6.19], P = 0.04) at days 0 and 4, and renal failure at day 4 (OR = 6.74 [95%CI = 1.50-13.29], P = 0.01), independently predicted new onset SIRS. Absence of SIRS in the first week was associated with reduced incidence of organ failure (20% vs 39.4%, P = 0.003), as was the 28-day (17.6% vs 36%, P = 0.02) and 90-day (27.5% vs 51%,P = 0.002) mortality. The 90-day mortality was 61.6% in the total cohort and that for those having no SIRS and SIRS at presentation were 42.8% and 65%, respectively (P 

  9. Lim SG, Phyo WW, Shah SR, Win KM, Hamid S, Piratvisuth T, et al.
    J Viral Hepat, 2018 12;25(12):1533-1542.
    PMID: 30141214 DOI: 10.1111/jvh.12989
    There is a paucity of information on chronic hepatitis C (CHC) patients treated with direct antiviral agents (DAAs) in Asia. We invited Asia-Pacific physicians to collate databases of patients enrolled for CHC treatment, recording baseline clinical, virologic and biochemical characteristics, sustained virologic response at week 12 (SVR12) and virologic failure. SVR12 outcome was based on intention to treat (ITT). Multivariate analysis was used to assess independent risk factors for SVR12 using SPSS version 20. A total of 2171 patients from India (n = 977), Myanmar (n = 552), Pakistan (n = 406), Thailand (n = 139), Singapore (n = 72) and Malaysia (n = 25) were collected. At baseline, mean age was 49 years, 50.2% were males, and 41.8% had cirrhosis. Overall, SVR12 was 89.5% and by genotype (GT) based on ITT and treatment completion, respectively, was 91% and 92% for GT1, 100% and 100% for GT2, 91% and 97% for GT3, 64% and 95% for GT4, 87% and 87% for GT6 and 79% and 91% for GT untested. Patients with cirrhosis had SVR12 of 85% vs 93% for noncirrhosis (P < 0.001) (RR 2.1, 95% CI 1.4-3.1, P = 0.0002). Patients with GT1 and GT3 treated with sofosbuvir/ribavirin (SR) had 88% and 89% SVR12, respectively, but those GT6 treated with sofosbuvir/ledipasvir (SL) had only 77.6% SVR12. Multivariate analysis showed absence of cirrhosis was associated with higher SVR12 (OR 2.0, 95% CI 1.3-3.1, P = 0.002). In conclusion, patients with GT1 and GT3 with/without cirrhosis had surprisingly high efficacy using SR, suggesting that Asians may respond better to some DAAs. However, poor GT6 response to SL suggests this regimen is suboptimal for this genotype.
  10. Maiwall R, Sarin SK, Kumar S, Jain P, Kumar G, Bhadoria AS, et al.
    Liver Int, 2017 Oct;37(10):1497-1507.
    PMID: 28393476 DOI: 10.1111/liv.13443
    BACKGROUND AND AIM: There is limited data on predictors of acute kidney injury in acute on chronic liver failure. We developed a PIRO model (Predisposition, Injury, Response, Organ failure) for predicting acute kidney injury in a multicentric cohort of acute on chronic liver failure patients.

    PATIENTS AND METHODS: Data of 2360 patients from APASL-ACLF Research Consortium (AARC) was analysed. Multivariate logistic regression model (PIRO score) was developed from a derivation cohort (n=1363) which was validated in another prospective multicentric cohort of acute on chronic liver failure patients (n=997).

    RESULTS: Factors significant for P component were serum creatinine[(≥2 mg/dL)OR 4.52, 95% CI (3.67-5.30)], bilirubin [(<12 mg/dL,OR 1) vs (12-30 mg/dL,OR 1.45, 95% 1.1-2.63) vs (≥30 mg/dL,OR 2.6, 95% CI 1.3-5.2)], serum potassium [(<3 mmol/LOR-1) vs (3-4.9 mmol/L,OR 2.7, 95% CI 1.05-1.97) vs (≥5 mmol/L,OR 4.34, 95% CI 1.67-11.3)] and blood urea (OR 3.73, 95% CI 2.5-5.5); for I component nephrotoxic medications (OR-9.86, 95% CI 3.2-30.8); for R component,Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome,(OR-2.14, 95% CI 1.4-3.3); for O component, Circulatory failure (OR-3.5, 95% CI 2.2-5.5). The PIRO score predicted acute kidney injury with C-index of 0.95 and 0.96 in the derivation and validation cohort. The increasing PIRO score was also associated with mortality (P

  11. Devarbhavi H, Choudhury AK, Sharma MK, Maiwall R, Al Mahtab M, Rahman S, et al.
    Am. J. Gastroenterol., 2019 06;114(6):929-937.
    PMID: 31021832 DOI: 10.14309/ajg.0000000000000201
    OBJECTIVES: Acute insults from viruses, infections, or alcohol are established causes of decompensation leading to acute-on-chronic liver failure (ACLF). Information regarding drugs as triggers of ACLF is lacking. We examined data regarding drugs producing ACLF and analyzed clinical features, laboratory characteristics, outcome, and predictors of mortality in patients with drug-induced ACLF.

    METHODS: We identified drugs as precipitants of ACLF among prospective cohort of patients with ACLF from the Asian Pacific Association of Study of Liver (APASL) ACLF Research Consortium (AARC) database. Drugs were considered precipitants after exclusion of known causes together with a temporal association between exposure and decompensation. Outcome was defined as death from decompensation.

    RESULTS: Of the 3,132 patients with ACLF, drugs were implicated as a cause in 329 (10.5%, mean age 47 years, 65% men) and other nondrug causes in 2,803 (89.5%) (group B). Complementary and alternative medications (71.7%) were the commonest insult, followed by combination antituberculosis therapy drugs (27.3%). Alcoholic liver disease (28.6%), cryptogenic liver disease (25.5%), and non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) (16.7%) were common causes of underlying liver diseases. Patients with drug-induced ACLF had jaundice (100%), ascites (88%), encephalopathy (46.5%), high Model for End-Stage Liver Disease (MELD) (30.2), and Child-Turcotte-Pugh score (12.1). The overall 90-day mortality was higher in drug-induced (46.5%) than in non-drug-induced ACLF (38.8%) (P = 0.007). The Cox regression model identified arterial lactate (P < 0.001) and total bilirubin (P = 0.008) as predictors of mortality.

    DISCUSSION: Drugs are important identifiable causes of ACLF in Asia-Pacific countries, predominantly from complementary and alternative medications, followed by antituberculosis drugs. Encephalopathy, bilirubin, blood urea, lactate, and international normalized ratio (INR) predict mortality in drug-induced ACLF.

  12. Sarin SK, Choudhury A, Lau GK, Zheng MH, Ji D, Abd-Elsalam S, et al.
    Hepatol Int, 2020 Sep;14(5):690-700.
    PMID: 32623632 DOI: 10.1007/s12072-020-10072-8
    BACKGROUND AND AIMS: COVID-19 is a dominant pulmonary disease, with multisystem involvement, depending upon comorbidities. Its profile in patients with pre-existing chronic liver disease (CLD) is largely unknown. We studied the liver injury patterns of SARS-Cov-2 in CLD patients, with or without cirrhosis.

    METHODS: Data was collected from 13 Asian countries on patients with CLD, known or newly diagnosed, with confirmed COVID-19.

    RESULTS: Altogether, 228 patients [185 CLD without cirrhosis and 43 with cirrhosis] were enrolled, with comorbidities in nearly 80%. Metabolism associated fatty liver disease (113, 61%) and viral etiology (26, 60%) were common. In CLD without cirrhosis, diabetes [57.7% vs 39.7%, OR = 2.1 (1.1-3.7), p = 0.01] and in cirrhotics, obesity, [64.3% vs. 17.2%, OR = 8.1 (1.9-38.8), p = 0.002] predisposed more to liver injury than those without these. Forty three percent of CLD without cirrhosis presented as acute liver injury and 20% cirrhotics presented with either acute-on-chronic liver failure [5 (11.6%)] or acute decompensation [4 (9%)]. Liver related complications increased (p 

  13. Sarin SK, Choudhury A, Sharma MK, Maiwall R, Al Mahtab M, Rahman S, et al.
    Hepatol Int, 2019 Jul;13(4):353-390.
    PMID: 31172417 DOI: 10.1007/s12072-019-09946-3
    The first consensus report of the working party of the Asian Pacific Association for the Study of the Liver (APASL) set up in 2004 on acute-on-chronic liver failure (ACLF) was published in 2009. With international groups volunteering to join, the "APASL ACLF Research Consortium (AARC)" was formed in 2012, which continued to collect prospective ACLF patient data. Based on the prospective data analysis of nearly 1400 patients, the AARC consensus was published in 2014. In the past nearly four-and-a-half years, the AARC database has been enriched to about 5200 cases by major hepatology centers across Asia. The data published during the interim period were carefully analyzed and areas of contention and new developments in the field of ACLF were prioritized in a systematic manner. The AARC database was also approached for answering some of the issues where published data were limited, such as liver failure grading, its impact on the 'Golden Therapeutic Window', extrahepatic organ dysfunction and failure, development of sepsis, distinctive features of acute decompensation from ACLF and pediatric ACLF and the issues were analyzed. These initiatives concluded in a two-day meeting in October 2018 at New Delhi with finalization of the new AARC consensus. Only those statements, which were based on evidence using the Grade System and were unanimously recommended, were accepted. Finalized statements were again circulated to all the experts and subsequently presented at the AARC investigators meeting at the AASLD in November 2018. The suggestions from the experts were used to revise and finalize the consensus. After detailed deliberations and data analysis, the original definition of ACLF was found to withstand the test of time and be able to identify a homogenous group of patients presenting with liver failure. New management options including the algorithms for the management of coagulation disorders, renal replacement therapy, sepsis, variceal bleed, antivirals and criteria for liver transplantation for ACLF patients were proposed. The final consensus statements along with the relevant background information and areas requiring future studies are presented here.
  14. Sarin SK, Choudhury A, Sharma MK, Maiwall R, Al Mahtab M, Rahman S, et al.
    Hepatol Int, 2019 11;13(6):826-828.
    PMID: 31595462 DOI: 10.1007/s12072-019-09980-1
    The article Acute-on-chronic liver failure: consensus recommendations of the Asian Pacific association for the study of the liver (APASL): an update, written by [Shiv Sarin], was originally published electronically on the publisher's internet portal (currently SpringerLink) on June 06, 2019 without open access.
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