Journal List > Korean J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr > v.12(1) > 1110165

Korean J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2009 Mar;12(1):23-29. Korean.
Published online Mar 31, 2009.
Copyright © 2009 The Korean Society of Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition
Clinical Experience with Long-term Lamivudine Therapy to Determine the Adequate Duration of Treatment in Children and Adolescents with HBeAg-Negative Chronic Hepatitis B
Jung Mi Kim, Suk Jin Hong, Byung Ho Choi, Mi Ae Chu, Seung Man Cho and Byung Ho Choe
Department of Pediatrics, Kyungpook National University Hospital, Daegu, Korea.



To provide the primary data for reaching a consensus on the adequate duration of treatment of lamivudine in children with HBeAg negative chronic hepatitis B.


Seven of 83 children/adolescents with chronic hepatitis B were diagnosed with HBeAg-negative and HBV DNA-positive chronic hepatitis B and treated with lamivudine. Six children/adolescents were enrolled among 7 patients, who had been treated with lamivudine over 2 years. The primary goal of treatment was HBV DNA clearance and normalization of the serum ALT level; the final goal of treatment was the durability of the complete response after discontinuation of lamivudine. It was planned to continue lamivudine for more than two additional years after HBV DNA negativity and normalization of ALT.


The mean duration of lamivudine treatment was 32.2 months (range, 26~40 months) and the mean duration of follow-up was 59.5 months (range, 26~110 months). HBV DNA levels became undetectable (<0.5 pg/mL) in 6 patients within 3 months of treatment. ALT levels were normalized in 3.5 months (range, 2~7 months) in all 6 patients. Biochemical breakthrough developed in 1 patient 18 months after the initiation of lamivudine treatment. No evidence of relapse could be found in 4 patients with a mean follow-up of 23.8 months (range, 4~75 months) after cessation of lamivudine treatment.


Suppression of HBV replication and normalization of serum ALT levels were effectively achieved with long-term lamivudine treatment in children/adolescents with HBeAg-negative chronic hepatitis B. Two additional years of lamivudine may be needed after HBV DNA clearance and ALT normalization in HBeAg-negative chronic hepatitis B in order to decrease the relapse rate.

Keywords: Hepatitis B e Antigens; HBV DNA; Lamivudine; Treatment; Children