It is well known that interferon (IFN) has various side effects including neuropsychiatric complications such as depression. We examined the relationship between neuropsychological impairment and regional cerebral blood flow (CBF) in chronic hepatitis patients treated with and without IFN-α. Eight patients with chronic hepatitis participated in this study. Four patients were treated with IFN-α (IFN group) and 4 patients were not treated (control group). The entire IFN group and half of the control group were diagnosed with hepatitis C and the rests of the control group had hepatitis B. Neuropsychological tests were conducted. The Self-Rating Depression Scale and the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory were also completed by the subjects. In addition, cerebral single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT; 3DSRT) was performed in all patients. Neuropsychological tests and SPECT were performed in the IFN group 2 months after starting IFN treatment and in the control group 2 months after starting follow-up. A significant reduction of regional CBF in the IFN group was observed in two cerebral regions (lt-angular and lt-temporal region) (P<0.05), which have reported associations with memory and language function. In addition, the Auditory-Verbal Learning Test (AVLT), a measure of memory function, showed a decreased tendency in the IFN group. A decrease of regional CBF by IFN treatment was shown, suggesting that a decrease of regional CBF may contribute to the neuropsychological impairment by IFN treatment.
- Chronic hepatitis
- Neuropsychological impairment
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)