In hepatitis C and hep C treatment there are three ‘R’s that are big, sad, and scary. They are the bringers of sadness that if doctors, friends, and communities could protect someone from, they would.
The Three ‘R’s of Hepatitis C Treatment
When treatment has been successful but over time the person has been infected with the hepatitis C virus again.
When treatment has been successful but over time the virus has come back.
Null/Non Response/rs & Partial Response/rs
A null response is when treatment doesn’t work to suppress the virus. The viral count of hep C in one’s blood doesn’t decrease. Those with a partial response saw the hep C decrease at week 12 but undesirably high levels of virus in the blood at week 24. Both types of patients went through unsuccessful hep C treatments.
Peer Supports, Support Groups, and Online Forums
Whether hep C patients and/or their supports are facing recurrence, relapse, or non-response, there are a number of support groups and hotlines available to support you and to answer your questions. Also, going online is a great way to find local groups and connect to communities through social media, especially on Facebook.
- Vancouver Infectious Diseases Centre (VIDC)
- HELP-4-HEP (hepatitis C helpline)
- HepCBC – Listing of Canadian peer support groups
- Pacific Hepatitis C Network Directory of Resource
Small Sampling of Journal Articles and Abstracts
- HCV Reinfection Following SVR: Clinical and Public Health Implications. 5th International Symposium on Hepatitis Care in Substance Users (INHSU 2016). Oslo, September 7-9, 2016. by H. Midgard
- C-EDGE CO-STAR: risk of reinfection following successful therapy with elbasvir (EBR) and grazoprevir (GZR) in persons who inject drugs (PWID) receiving opioid agonist therapy (OAT). 5th International Symposium on Hepatitis Care in Substance Users (INHSU 2016). Oslo, September 7-9, 2016. by O Dalgard, et al.
- Comparison of rates of recurrent HCV viremia in high-risk patients receiving all-oral and interferon-based regimens. 5th International Symposium on Hepatitis Care in Substance Users (INHSU 2016). Oslo, September 7-9, 2016. by T Raycraft, et al.
- Risk of Late Relapse or Reinfection With Hepatitis C Virus After Achieving a Sustained Virological Response: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis (January 2016) by Bryony Simmons, et al.
- INHSU 2016: Risk of Reinfection Is a Concern After Successful Hepatitis C Treatment by Liz Highleyman for HIVandHepatitis.com (Sept 27, 2016)
- Hep C Relapses Are Uncommon Among Those Proclaimed Cured, But Reinfection is a Concern by hepmag.com (2016)
- The ‘R’ Word: The Sad Reality of Relapse by hepmag.com (2016)
- Genotype 3 and the Sofosbuvir + Daclatasvir Treatment and relapses by hepmag.com (2016)
However, something to note is that this blog post was written a couple of months ago and since then, new and better treatments have become available and are covered by BC PharmaCare.