Wednesday, 19 October 2016

The Facts About Hepatitis C | Prognosis and Life Expectancy

Success rate of treatment depends on genotype
The goal of treatment for chronic hepatitis C is to kill the virus or to control the disease and prevent further damage to the liver. The type of treatment given depends on the genotype of virus that someone has been infected with. According to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, 75% of people in the U.S. infected with the virus have genotype 1; between 20 and 25 percent have genotype 2 or 3; and a very small percent have genotypes 4, 5, or 6. The success of the treatment depends on the genotype.

Chronic hepatitis C is treated with several medications. Some of the drugs are used for helping boost the immune system, while others are used for trying to kill the virus. People with genotypes 2 and 3 are twice as likely as people with genotype 1 to be cured. Also, genotype 2 and 3 patients usually see results after 24 weeks of treatment, whereas 48 weeks of treatment is what is typically recommended for genotype 1 patients.
After completing treatment, 60-80% of patients with genotype 2 and 3 no longer have the virus. In genotype 1, 60-75% of patients are virus-free.

Life Expectancy
According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, 5-20% of people with chronic hepatitis C develop cirrhosis. It normally takes 20 to 30 years of chronic hepatitis C to develop into cirrhosis. About 4% of people with cirrhosis develop liver cancer. Liver cancer is rarely seen in people without the presence of cirrhosis.

New hope for HCV patients

Timeline of Hepatitis C drugs

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Antiviral Drugs Advisory Committee has recently announced approval of an effective new drug to treat HCV. The new drug is called sofosbuvir400mg/Ledipasvir90mg [Harvoni], and when used in combination with other drugs, has been shown to be very effective for treating hepatitis C. Patients taking the drug may see results more quickly and with fewer side effects.

1 comment:

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