1Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA, USA.
This article describes the importance of extrahepatic systemic manifestations of chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection. While most HCV literature focuses on liver injury and fibrosis progression, a spectrum of systemic disease processes, collectively called C hepatitis-associated systemic manifestations (CHASMs), are present in a high proportion of infected persons. These include thyroid disease (Hashimoto's thyroiditis, Graves disease, and thyroid cancer), cardiovascular disease (atherosclerosis, carotid artery disease, and coronary artery disease), renal disease (MPGN and glomerulosclerosis), eye disease (Mooren's ulcers and sicca syndrome), skin disease (PCT, vasculitis, and lichen planus), lymphomas (NHL and splenic T-cell), and diabetes. Mechanistic understanding of how HCV leads to CHASM processes could lead to development of new interventions. The role of early HCV treatment and cure may result in preventive strategies for a variety of complex disease states. Key Points • Systemic extrahepatic complications of HCV comprise a spectrum of disease states in many organs and systems.• Effective treatment of HCV may reduce or eliminate some but not all of these systemic complications.• Further research into early treatment intervention as a prevention strategy for systemic disease is warranted.