Can Hepatitis C virus treatment be used as a prevention strategy? Additional model projections for Australia and elsewhere

Peter Vickerman, Natasha Martin, Matthew Hickman
Drug and Alcohol Dependence 2011 January 15, 113 (2-3): 83-5; discussion 86-7
Zeiler et al. (2010) use a simple model to project the potential prevention utility of using pegylated interferon and ribavirin to treat active injecting drug users (IDUs) for HCV infection. Their analysis shows that increasing the level of HCV treatment in Australia could dramatically reduce the prevalence of HCV infection among IDUs. We argue that their projections are under-estimating the possible impact of HCV treatment because their assumed prevalence of active HCV infection in Australia is too high (assumed prevalence of acute plus chronic is 60%) and their model effectively assumes a treatment efficacy of 33%. We replicate their model and show that if these issues are corrected (assuming 45% prevalence of active HCV infection, i.e. ∼60% antibody prevalence and 50% treatment efficacy), then substantially greater impact can be achieved. In addition, we show that the effect of HCV treatment on the primary prevention of HCV increases in populations with lower background HCV prevalence. We also query their finding that HCV treatment should be preferentially targeted to IDUs not on methadone maintenance treatment.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Related Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"