Liver Unit, IRCCS "Casa Sollievo della Sofferenza", San Giovanni Rotondo, ITALY.
Current treatment for patients with non-genotype 1 hepatitis C virus infection consists of Peg-interferon plus ribavirin for 24 weeks, which leads to SVR rates of 65-80%. In USA, ribavirin dose for genotypes 2 and 3 is 800 mg a day. However, the use of weight-based ribavirin allows for the potential to shorten the duration of treatment from 24 to 12-14 weeks without reducing SVR rates in individuals who are undetectable at treatment week 4 and do not have severe liver disease. For patients who are still viremic at week 4, treatment durations even longer than 24 weeks are advised in Europe. In addition, accumulating evidence shows that for patients with unfavorable baseline characteristics, using weight-based ribavirin may increase SVR. In patients who do not achieve SVR with 800 mg ribavirin for 24 weeks, retreatment with weight-based ribavirin should be considered. The impact of new molecules in development will be discussed.