Indications and limitations for aged patients with chronic hepatitis C in pegylated interferon alfa-2b plus ribavirin combination therapy

Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Osaka University Graduate School of Medicine, Suita, Japan.
Journal of Hepatology (Impact Factor: 10.4). 12/2010; 54(4):604-11. DOI: 10.1016/j.jhep.2010.07.043
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT This study investigated the efficacy and adverse effects of pegylated interferon (Peg-IFN) plus ribavirin therapy in aged patients with chronic hepatitis C (CH-C).
A total of 1040 naïve patients with CH-C (genotype 1, n=759; genotype 2, n=281), of whom 240 (23%) over 65 years old (y.o.), were treated with Peg-IFN alfa-2b plus ribavirin and assessed after being classified into five categories, according to age.
The discontinuance rate was higher for patients over 70 y.o. (36%), the most common reason being anemia. In the presence of genotype 1, the SVR rate was similar (42-46%) among patients under 65 y.o. and declined (26-29%) among patients over 65 y.o. For patients over 65 y.o., being male (Odds ratio, OR, 3.5, p=0.035) and EVR (OR, 83.3, p<0.001) were significant factors for SVR, in multivariate analysis. The Peg-IFN dose was related to EVR, and when EVR was attained, 76-86% of patients over 65 y.o. achieved SVR. SVR was not achieved (0/35, 0/38, respectively) if a 1-log decrease and a 2-log decrease were not attained at week 4 and week 8, respectively. In the presence of genotype 2, the SVR rate was similar (70-71%) among patients under 70 y.o. and declined among patients over 70 y.o. (43%).
Aged patients up to 65 y.o. with genotype 1 and 70 y.o. with genotype 2 can be candidates for Peg-IFN plus ribavirin therapy. The response-guided therapy can be applied for aged patients with genotype 1.

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