Treating acute hepatitis C patients with a regimen of sofosbuvir and ledipasvir for just 6 weeks – instead of the usual 12-weeks – was found to achieve 100% sustained virologic response (SVR) and undetectable Hep C at a Week 12 follow up.

The findings come from a study of 20 patients with risk factors of HCV infection including sexual transmission (n=11), medical procedures/needle stick injury (n=5), drug use (n=1), and nail treatment complications (n=1).

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“Our research demonstrates that not only is the combination of sofosbuvir and ledipasvir safe, well tolerated and effective in acute HCV genotype 1 patients who have severe liver disease with very high liver enzymes, but a shorter treatment duration does not appear to hinder efficacy,” said Professor Heiner Wedemeyer, senior author of the study.

The authors hope their findings could provide a new, cost-effective treatment option for HCV. The most common side effect reported by study participants was fatigue (30%).

The full findings from the study were presented at The International Liver Congress in Barcelona, Spain. The authors concluded by emphasizing the need for the pilot program to be expanded, “so the findings can be validated and then hopefully used as a tool to change clinical practice for the better.”

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