Purposes: Lenvatinib (LEN) is a molecular-target drug, used for unresectable hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). It is associated with adverse events (AEs), including hypertension, proteinuria, fatigue, and anorexia, which may force dose reduction or discontinuation. Ninjin’yoeito (NYT) is a Chinese–Japanese herbal compound that can effectively treat fatigue and anorexia, and which has been used for chronic liver diseases. NYT reduces AEs and improves the liver function in patients treated with sorafenib but its effect on LEN is unclear. Methods: The present study included 46 patients (male, n = 32; female, n = 14) who received LEN for HCC at our hospital. Their median age was 70 years (range 36–88 years), and their median body weight was 61.5 kg (range 38.4–97.0 kg). Patients were divided into two groups, depending on whether they received NYT medication. Their AEs and liver function were examined one month after starting LEN. Results: The NYT group suffered less fatigue (63.6% vs. 11.4%, P = 0.0014) and showed elevated aspartate aminotransferase levels (45.5% vs. 14.3%, P = 0.0433) in comparison to the non-NYT group. The non-NYT group also showed a significantly exacerbated albumin-bilirubin (ALBI) grade (P = 0.0342) and ALBI score (average change: + 0.232, P = 0.0001) at 1 month in comparison to baseline. Conclusion: NYT apparently suppressed LEN-induced fatigue and helped maintain liver function in patients with HCC.
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