Background and aims:
Patients chronically infected with hepatitis B virus (HBV) are at high risk of liver fibrosis, cirrhosis and liver cancer, despite recent therapeutic advances. It is therefore crucial to find non-pharmaceutical options for liver fibrosis prevention in this population. Using cross-sectional data from the ANRS CO22 Hepather cohort, we aimed to identify socio-demographic and modifiable risk factors for significant fibrosis in chronic HBV patients.
Logistic regression or Firth's penalized maximum likelihood logistic regression (according to outcome prevalence) multivariable models were used to test for associations between explanatory variables and significant fibrosis, as assessed by three non-invasive markers: aspartate aminotransferase to platelet ratio index (APRI), FIB-4, and gamma glutamyltransferase to platelet ratio (GPR). Analyses were stratified by HBV treatment status.
The study population comprised 2065 untreated and 1727 treated chronic HBV patients. Elevated coffee consumption was consistently associated with a lower risk of elevated fibrosis biomarkers in all three treated-participant models, suggesting a dose-response relationship (adjusted odds ratios for ≥3 cups/day versus 0 cups/day: 0.16, 0.35 and 0.62, p ≤ 0.002, according to APRI, FIB-4 and GPR, respectively). Other modifiable risk factors included tobacco and alcohol use.
Elevated coffee consumption was consistently associated with a lower risk of significant liver fibrosis, as assessed by three non-invasive markers in treated chronic HBV patients. This result can be immediately used in real-world situations, as increasing coffee consumption may be beneficial for patients at risk of advanced liver disease.