Patients coinfected with chronic hepatitis C and occult hepatitis B were more likely to develop cirrhosis or hepatocellular carcinoma and had poorer survival than patients with hepatitis C alone in a recent study.
In an observational cohort study, researchers tested 326 patients with chronic HCV
for occult HBV infection (OBI) between 1991 and 2000. All participants
were hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg)-negative and underwent liver
biopsy. Follow-up for a median of 11 years (range 5-19 years) was
performed in 94 patients, including 37 OBI-positive and 57 OBI-negative