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Health-related quality of life predicts the outcome of therapy for chronic hepatitis C

A study in the most recent issue of the Journal of Gastroenterology & Hepatology assesses how health-related quality of life predicts the outcome of pegylated interferon and ribavirin therapy for chronic hepatitis C.

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Chronic infection with hepatitis C virus (HCV) decreases health-related quality of life.

Dr Fusao Ikeda and colleagues from Japan investigated the impact of health-related quality of life of patients with chronic hepatitis C on the outcomes of therapy with pegylated interferon and ribavirin, in addition to IL28B polymorphisms.

The study enrolled 228 chronic hepatitis C patients, and assessed their health-related quality of life prospectively with the 36-item short-form health survey.

The researchers found that the patients with chronic hepatitis C have lower physical health-related quality of life status than the general population.

The patients with advanced liver diseases exhibited further decreases in health-related quality of life.

Patients with low HRQOL score will have less decrease in HRQOL score by 4 weeks
Journal of Gastroenterology & Hepatology

The team noted that the score of total health-related quality of life was significantly lower in the group with sustained virological response to the therapy with pegylated interferon and ribavirin than the non-sustained virological response group.

The researchers observed significantly lower scores of mental component and its comprising subscales in the sustained virological response group.

Stepwise multivariate logistic regression analysis showed that low HRQOL score ≤ 400 points was significantly associated with sustained virological response, independently from high platelet counts, low HCV RNA, favorable single-nucleotide polymorphism type of IL28B, and HCV serotype 2.

The patients with low health-related quality of life score will have significantly less decrease in HRQOL score by 4 weeks of the treatment than those with high health-related quality of life score at baseline.

Dr Ikeda's team concludes, "Health-related quality of life is one of the significant predictor of the outcomes of therapy with pegylated interferon and RBV independently from IL28B polymorphism."

J Gastroenterol Hepatol 2014: 29(2): 337–343
19 February 2014

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