Blocking and reversing hepatic fibrosis in patients with chronic hepatitis B treated by traditional Chinese medicine (tablets of biejia ruangan or RGT): study protocol for a randomized controlled trial.

Blocking and reversing hepatic fibrosis in patients with chronic hepatitis B treated by traditional Chinese medicine (tablets of biejia ruangan or RGT): study protocol for a randomized controlled trial.

Trials. 2014 Nov 10;15(1):438

Authors: Qu J, Yu Z, Li Q, Chen Y, Xiang D, Tan L, Lei C, Bai W, Li H, Shang Q, Chen L, Hu X, Lu W, Li Z, Chen D, Wang X, Zhang C, Xiao G, Qi X, Chen J, Zhou L, Chen G, Li Y, Zeng Z, Rong G, Dong Z, Chen Y, Lou M, Wang C, Lu Y, Zhang C, Yang Y

Abstract
BACKGROUND: Chronic hepatitis B (CHB) can progress to cirrhosis, hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and ultimately liver-related death. Although oral antiviral therapy for patients with CHB reduces the risk of such complications, once cirrhosis is established, the benefits of antiviral therapy are not robustly demonstrated. According to traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), some Chinese herbal medicines promote blood circulation and soften hard masses, and therefore they may block and reverse hepatic fibrosis. The aim of this study is to evaluate the effects of TCM tablets of the compound biejia ruangan (RGT) administered for fibrosis, and entecavir (ETV), on the development of HCC in patients with CHB or hepatitis B virus (HBV)-related compensated cirrhosis.Methods/design: This multicenter, centrally randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, parallel-group study is planned to complete within 5 years. For the study, 1,000 with CHB or HBV-related compensated cirrhosis are randomly assigned in a 1:1 ratio to a treatment group (0.5 mg ETV once daily; 2 g RGT three times daily) or a control group (0.5 mg ETV once daily; 2 g RGT dummy agent three times daily). The primary end points are the development of HCC and liver-related death. Secondary end points include disease progression and overall survival.
DISCUSSION: Although antiviral therapy can achieve sustained suppression of HBV replication, thereby preventing cirrhosis, patients with CHB treated with nucleos(t)ide analogs (NUCs) retain a higher risk for HCC compared with patients with inactive disease. Although previous clinical trials with RGT have confirmed the efficacy of blocking and reversing hepatic fibrosis in patients with CHB or compensated cirrhosis, the long-term risk for HCC or disease progression in these patients treated with combination of RGT and NUCs compared with NUCs alone is unclear. Therefore, it is necessary to investigate the effects of the RGT blockade and reversal of hepatic fibrosis on the development of HCC in patients with CHB or HBV-related compensated cirrhosis in large, prospective, multicenter, double-blind, randomized, controlled trials in China.Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT01965418. Date registered: 17 October 2013.

PMID: 25381721 [PubMed – as supplied by publisher]

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