Paper Assesses Effectiveness of HCV Treatments

Recently posted by the federal Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, the paper says antiviral therapy for chronic hepatitis C virus infection continues to evolve.

The federal Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality has posted a recently published paper reviewing the effectiveness of treatments being administered to people with chronic hepatitis C. The authors say no study has evaluated the comparative effectiveness of current antiviral regimens on long-term clinical outcomes such as mortality, complications of chronic HCV infection, or quality of life.

Patients with HCV who achieved a sustained virologic response (SVR) -- undetectable levels of the virus six months after completing treatment -- have a lower risk of death than those who do not achieve it, according to the research review from AHRQ’s Effective Health Care Program, which is published in Comparative Effectiveness Reviews, No. 76.

HCV, the most common chronic bloodborne pathogen, is associated with an estimated 15,000 U.S. deaths per year. The review compares the effectiveness of dual- and triple-drug combinations in achieving the desired SVR.

Antiviral therapy for chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection continues to evolve. Acknowledging trials would be difficult to design and carry out because of the long time required for complications of chronic HCV infection to develop in most patients, the authors said it is critical that future studies evaluate clinical outcomes in patients with SVR versus no SVR after antiviral therapy and adequately control for other factors that influence clinical outcomes in chronic HCV infection.

To read the full paper, visit http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK115347/.

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