RESPONSE TO STANDARD INTERFERON A2b AND RIBAVIRIN COMBINATION THERAPY IN CHRONIC HEPATITIS C TREATMENT NAÏVE PATIENTS

Shah Muhammad Khan Jadoon, Samina Jadoon, Iqbal Muhammad

Abstract


Background: Treatment of Chronic Hepatitis C is now well established with conventional interferon or
pegylated interferon in combination with ribavirin. Peginterferon Alfa and Ribavirin for 6 to 12 months
is currently approved initial therapy, which is expensive. Response of our patients to standard
Interferon-alpha-2b and ribavirin for 24 weeks have been studied. The objective of this study was to
asses Sustained Viral Response (SVR) with standard Interferon A2b and Ribavirin combination
treatment in chronic Hepatitis C patients. Methods: This quasi-experimental study was conducted at
Combined Military Hospital, Quetta from Jan 2006 to Jun 2007. One hundred and three patients, with
20–60 years of age suffering from chronic Hepatitis C were selected on the basis of raised ALT,
positive anti-HCV antibodies, evidence of viraemia by quantitative PCR for HCV RNA and liver
biopsy. All patients were started on same brand of Interferon alpha-2b, 3 MIU subcutaneously, thrice
weekly and oral Ribavirin (1,000–1,200 mg/day) for 24 weeks. End treatment response (ETR) after
completion of treatment and SVR six months after ETR were recorded. Results: The 103 patients, 85
males and 18 females with mean age of 21–48 years completed the treatment for 24 weeks. Mean ALT
was 96.17 (SD±49.98). End treatment response (ETR) was 89.3% (p=0.032). Sustained Viral Response
after 6 months of treatment was 86.4% (p=0.034). Conclusion: Standard Interferon and Ribavirin had
excellent SVR. It is effective as well as economical treatment in Chronic Hepatitis C patients.
Keywords: Chronic Hepatitis C, Interferon A2b, Ribavirin, SVR

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