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Is it ok for inactive carrier to take Entecavir?
Jan 18, 2006

Hello Dr. Dieterich, I'm an inactive carrier of HBV according to the accepted definition of inactive carrier. ALT 27, AST 17 HBV DNA 500 IU/ml. I'm 37 yrs old and have acquired HBV in the past 16 years. I have looked into my medical records and found that I tested negative for the surface antigen in 1989. Knowing all this, would enticavir get rid of the virus from my system and reduce the risk of HCC? The biannual checkup with ultrasound and afp is very stressful for me. Especially when afp some times goes above 10 ng/ml. It is below 15 ng/ml but some times it goes up to 12 or 13 ng/ml. Thank you very much for taking valuable time from your busy schedule to answer questions from me and all other people who are faced with this dilemma. The world need more people like you and Dr McGovern.

Response from Dr. Dieterich

There is unlikely to be any harm from taking entecavir to suppress HBV DNA. In fact, there may be some help, however there is no real data yet to suggest that suppressing just 500 IU will make a difference. There is always a small chance that you will clear the surface antigen whether you take the entecavir or not. I would never argue against suppressing the virus to undectable levels. Good luck! DTD

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