Department of Medicine, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, AL, USA.
Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, University of Alabama at Birmingham, AL, USA.
Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is a leading cause of liver-related death worldwide. Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is a major cause of advanced hepatic fibrosis and cirrhosis, with significantly increased risk for development of HCC. The morbidity and mortality of HCV-related HCC remains high, as rates of HCV cirrhosis continue to increase. The long-term goal of antiviral therapy for chronic HCV is to reduce complications from cirrhosis, including HCC. The advent of new direct-acting antivirals with high rates of virological clearance has revolutionized cure of HCV infection. While the development of HCC in HCV patients who achieve disease sustained virologic response is reduced, these patients remain at risk for HCC, particularly those patients with advanced fibrosis and cirrhosis. This review outlines the epidemiology of HCC in chronic HCV, various mechanisms, risk factors and pathophysiology that contribute to this disease process, screening recommendations, and the available data on the impact of new direct-acting antiviral treatment on the development on HCC.