Given that people who inject drugs (PWID) have a high success rate on hepatitis C virus (HCV) treatment, these individuals should not be restricted from receiving such medications, according to researchers behind a new meta-analysis of hep C treatment studies including PWID as participants.
Publishing their findings in The Lancet Gastroenterology and Hepatology, researchers included 38 studies representing 3,634 participants in their meta-analysis.
Twenty-one studies with a total 1,408 participants included those with recent injection or noninjection drug use. A total of 97.5 percent of these individuals completed hep C treatment, and 87.7 percent achieved a sustained virologic response 12 weeks after completing therapy (SVR12, considered a cure).
Thirty-six studies with a total 2,987 participants included those receiving opioid medication treatment. A respective 97.4 percent and 90.7 percent of these individuals completed HCV treatment and were cured.
Eight studies with a total 670 participants included those with recent injection drug use. A respective 96.9 percent and 87.4 percent of these individuals completed HCV treatment and were cured.
Older participants were more likely to be cured and less likely to be lost to follow-up than younger ones. Additionally, those in clinical trials were about twice as likely as those in observational studies to be cured.
To read a press release about the study, click here.
To read the study abstract, click here.