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Drug supply/logistics (including: computeraided drug dispatching and ward pharmacies)
The effectiveness and safety of Peginterferon alfa-2a in patients with chronic hepatitis C on haemodialysis
  1. J. Bajraktar,
  2. E. Najdovska,
  3. B. Lazarova
  1. 1Institute of nephrology, Hospital Pharmacy, Struga, FYROM
  2. 2Clinical Hospital, Department for Compounding Sterile Products, Bitola, FYROM
  3. 3Clinical Hospital, Hospital Pharmacy, Stip, FYROM

Abstract

Background Hepatitis C (HCV) virus infection is the most common cause of liver disease in patients on haemodialysis (HD). It's a very serious and difficult health problem in these patients because of increased mortality. It reduces the chance of a kidney transplant and reduces the quality of life. The Hepatitis C virus is a RNK virus from the Flaviviridae family. For the treatment of Hepatitis C PEGASYS, peginterferon alfa-2a is recommended, which is a covalent conjugate of recombinant alfa-2a interferon.

Purpose To evaluate the efficacy and safety of using peginterferon alfa-2a (Pegasys) in our hospital.

Materials and methods A retrospective descriptive study of patients treated with peginterferon alfa-2a for periods of 6 years (2005-2011). The information was obtained from medical records. The following data were recorded: age, sex, diagnosis, treatment, dose, laboratory test (alanine aminotransferase-ALT), AST, anti-HCV with micro Elisa and HCV-RNK with the PCR. The safety profile was evaluated by type of side effect.

Results 32 patients were treated with Pegasys (29 men and 3 women); average age of 49.91 (32-70) years; the dose administered was 135 mcg/week SC (subcutaneous) over a period of 48 weeks. After the treatment, 30 patients had undetectable HCV-RNK, however 2 of them became again HCV-RNK positive, 6 months after the treatment. In these patients treatment with peginterferon alfa-2a was repeated successfully. In 2 patients the treatment was discontinued after 12 weeks due to absence of early virological response. The main side effects were muscle pains, fatigue, fever and anaemia (anaemia in our patients was corrected with erythropoietin).

Conclusions The treatments were effective and safe for our patients. Pegasys showed efficacy in 30 out of 32 patients. The side effects did not stop treatment; it was well accepted by our patients. Pegasys remains the drug of choice in treating patients with hepatitis C, for effectiveness and safety.

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