03. tbl. 103. árg. 2017

Treatment of hepatitis C with peginterferon and ribavirin in Iceland from 2002-2012

Meðferð lifrarbólgu C með peg-interferóni alfa og ríbavíríni á Íslandi 2002-2012

Background/Aims: Hepatitis C is a major cause of chronic liver disease and cirrhosis in Western countries. Its treatment aims at eradicating the virus and patients are considered cured if the virus is undetectable by PCR in blood 12-24 weeks after end of treatment (sustained virological response, SVR). The aim of this study is to investigate the results of treating hepatitis C in Iceland during the period 2002-2012.

Materials and methods: Retrospective study including all patients with hepatitis C receiving treatment with peginterferone and ribavirin at Landspitali University hospital during the period 2002-2012. Patients who had been treated previously were excluded. Information was obtained from medical records and the hospital pharmacy.

Results: A total of 207 patients were included, 136 (66%) males and 71 (34%) females. Mean age was 38 years (range 17-66). Genotyping revealed that 71 (34%) patients had genotype 1, 135 (65%) genotype 3 and one genotype 2. A total of 147 (71%) patients achieved SVR. The rate of SVR was 77.8% for genotype 3 and 57.7% for genotype 1. 9 patients (4%) had cirrhosis and 3 of them had SVR. Of 161 patients who finished treatment per protocol, 87.5% and 77.1% with genotypes 3 and 1 respectively had SVR.

Conclusions: The study demonstrates higher rates of SVR in clinical practice in Iceland compared to controlled clinical trials. The improved effectiveness may be explained by younger patient population, low rate of cirrhosis and close follow-up of patients.

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