To investigate the value of the gamma-glutamyltraspeptidase (GGT)-to-platelet (PLT) ratio (GPR) in the diagnosis of hepatic fibrosis in patients with chronic hepatitis B (CHB).
We included 390 untreated CHB patients in this study. The GPR, aspartate aminotransferase (AST)-to-PLT ratio index (APRI), and fibrosis-4 (FIB-4) of all patients were analysed to determine if these parameter were correlated with age, gender, medical history, liver function [total bilirubin (TBil), alanine aminotransferase (ALT), and AST], GGT, PLT count, or hepatic fibrosis stage. The GPR, APRI, and FIB-4, as well as the combination of the GPR and APRI or the GPR and FIB-4 were assessed in different cirrhosis stages using receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve analysis to evaluate their value in diagnosing hepatic fibrosis in CHB patients.
The GPR, APRI, and FIB-4 were not correlated with CHB patients’ age, gender, or disease duration (P > 0.05), but all of these parameters were positively correlated with serum ALT, AST, GGT, and PLT count (P < 0.01). Additionally, the GPR, APRI, and FIB-4 were positively correlated with hepatic fibrosis (P < 0.01); the areas under the ROC curve for the GPR in F1, F2, F3, and F4 stages were 0.723, 0.741, 0.826, and 0.833, respectively, which were significantly higher than the respective values for the FIB-4 and APRI (F1: 0.581, 0.612; F2: 0.706, 0.711; F3: 0.73, 0.751; and F4: 0.799, 0.778). The respective diagnostic cut-off points for each stage were 0.402, 0.448, 0.548, and 0.833, respectively. The diagnostic sensitivity and specificity were, respectively, 88.8% and 87.5% in F1, 72.7% and 89.7% in F2, 81.3% and 98.6% in F3, and 80% and 97.4% in F4 when the GPR and APRI were connected in parallel; 86.6% and 90.2%, 78.4% and 96%, 78.6% and 97.4%, and 73.2% and 97.9%, respectively, when the GPR and APRI were connected in series; 80.2% and 89%, 65% and 89%, 70.3% and 98.5%, and 78.8% and 96.8%, respectively, when the GPR and FIB-4 were connected in parallel; and 83.6% and 87.9%, 76.8% and 96.6%, 72.7% and 98%, and 74.4% and 97.7%, respectively, when the GPR and FIB-4 were connected in series.
The GPR, as a serum diagnostic index of liver fibrosis, is more accurate, sensitive, and easy to use than the FIB-4 and APRI, and the GPR can significantly improve the sensitivity and specificity of hepatic fibrosis diagnosis in CHB when combined with the FIB-4 or APRI.
Core tip: Hepatic fibrosis is a precursor of cirrhosis for chronic hepatitis B patients. Severe hepatic fibrosis and cirrhosis can increase the incidence and mortality of primary liver cancer. Although liver biopsy is still the gold standard for the diagnosis of liver fibrosis, it is not widely used as a routine examination because of its invasiveness, high cost, and lack of repeatability. Identification of a simple, convenient, cheap, and noninvasive index to assess patients’ hepatic fibrosis level is thus urgently needed. The aim of the present study was to investigate the value of the gamma-glutamyltranspeptidase-to-platelet ratio in the diagnosis of hepatic fibrosis in patients with chronic hepatitis B.