Antibiotic stewardship and empirical antibiotic treatment: How can they get along?The aim of this review is to focus on the recent knowledge on antibiotic stewardship and empiric antibiotic treatment in cirrhotic patients. The application of antimicrobial stewardship (AMS) rules appears to be the most appropriate strategy to globally manage cirrhotic patients with infectious complications: indeed they represent a unique way to provide both early diagnosis and appropriate therapy in order to avoid not only antibiotic over-prescription but, more importantly, selection and spread of antimicrobial resistance.
Triple therapy with first-generation Protease Inhibitors for patients with genotype 1 chronic hepatitis C: Recommendations of the Italian Association for the Study of the Liver (AISF)The first-generation Protease Inhibitors Boceprevir and Telaprevir administered in triple therapy regimens with Peg-interferon alpha and Ribavirin have been proven effective in increasing the rate of Sustained Virological Response in both naive and treatment-experienced patients with chronic genotype-1 hepatitis C. However, at the individual level, the therapeutic advantage of triple therapy is highly variable and results from the combination of multiple factors related to the characteristics of patient, viral status and liver disease.
Treatment of chronic hepatitis B: Update of the recommendations from the 2007 Italian WorkshopThe Italian recommendations for the therapy of hepatitis B virus (HBV)-related disease were issued in 2008. Subsequently in 2008 the nucleotide analogue (NA) Tenofovir was approved for antiviral treatment. The introduction of this important new drug has called for the current guidelines update, which includes some additional revisions: (a) the indication for therapy is extended to mild liver fibrosis and the indication for treatment is graded as “possible”, “optional” or “mandatory” according to the fibrosis stage; (b) two different treatment strategies are described: first line definite duration treatment with interferon, long-term treatment of indefinite duration with NA; (c) the indication to follow either strategy is also based on the stage of liver fibrosis; (d) virological monitoring is modified to include the definitions of failure and of sustained virological response to interferon therapy; (e) the recommendation to use HBV DNA assays with high sensitivity and wide linear ranges is underlined (f) guidelines on post-treatment follow-up after finite treatment with NA, potential side effects of therapy and non-virological monitoring are defined; (g) definitions and treatment of patients without optimal response to NA are reported; (f) treatment and monitoring of compensated or decompensated cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma are updated.
Forthcoming challenges in the management of direct-acting antiviral agents (DAAs) for hepatitis CAgents that specifically target the replication cycle of the virus direct-acting antiviral agents (DAAs) by directly inhibiting the NS3/4A serine protease, the NS5B polymerase and NS5A are currently in clinical development. The need to achieve serum drug concentrations able to suppress viral replication is a key factor for a successful antiviral therapy and the prevention of resistance. Thus pharmacokinetics parameters became important issues for drugs used in the therapy of hepatitis C. The ratio of Cmin/IC50 (inhibitory quotient or IQ) can provide a surrogate measure of a drug's ability to suppress HCV replication, by taking into account the relationship between plasma drug levels and viral susceptibility to the drug.