Discontinuation of pegylated interferon plus ribavirin in patients who are not responding to therapy -- patients' views of early cessation of therapy.
Aliment Pharmacol Ther
BACKGROUND: Current therapy for chronic hepatitis C infection involves a course of pegylated interferon and ribavirin. Patients who do not show a virological response after 12 weeks of therapy have a low probability of sustained virological response and it is therefore recommended that such patients stop treatment. AIM: To assess patients' views of early treatment cessation. METHODS: We conducted a open-labelled study in three UK centres, in which patients with biopsy-proven chronic hepatitis C requiring therapy were offered the choice of a full course of therapy with 40 kDa pegylated interferon-alpha 2a plus ribavirin (24 or 48 weeks depending on viral genotype) or early cessation if therapy had failed after 12 weeks. RESULTS: Ninety-five participants were enrolled and the majority (69%) did not wish to discontinue therapy even if it had low probability of success. In this unselected UK population, very few patients (4%) did not achieve an early virological response with the 40-kDa pegylated interferon-alpha 2a plus ribavirin and two of the four early virological non-responders decided to continue therapy. CONCLUSION: Early discontinuation of 'ineffective' anti-viral therapy may prove less popular with patients than with health care providers, and further patient-directed education regarding the cost-effectiveness of therapy will be needed if early discontinuation of unsuccessful therapy is to be accepted by patients.
|Title:||Discontinuation of pegylated interferon plus ribavirin in patients who are not responding to therapy -- patients' views of early cessation of therapy.|
|Keywords:||Adult, Aged, Antiviral Agents, Attitude to Health, Cohort Studies, Drug Resistance, Viral, Drug Therapy, Combination, Female, Hepatitis C, Chronic, Humans, Interferon-alpha, Male, Middle Aged, Polyethylene Glycols, Recombinant Proteins, Ribavirin, Treatment Failure|
|UCL classification:||UCL > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences
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