Northwest Hepatitis source Center

Seattle, WA, United States

Northwest Hepatitis source Center

Seattle, WA, United States

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Beste L.A.,VA Puget Sound Healthcare System | Beste L.A.,Northwest Hepatitis source Center | Ioannou G.N.,VA Puget Sound Healthcare System | Ioannou G.N.,University of Washington | And 7 more authors.
Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology | Year: 2010

Background & Aims: A significant proportion of patients with hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection discontinue antiviral treatment prematurely. Risk factors for discontinuation before 48 weeks among patients with genotype 1 HCV vary over the course of therapy. We investigated the rates and risk factors for treatment discontinuation within 12 weeks, 12-24 weeks, and 24-48 weeks. Methods: We retrospectively evaluated data from all Veterans Affairs (VA) patients with genotype 1 HCV who initiated pegylated interferon and ribavirin therapy from 2002-2007 (n = 11,019). We accounted for appropriate discontinuation because of viral nonresponse. Results: Overall, 53% of patients completed at least 38.4 weeks of therapy (80% of the projected 48 weeks), 16.5% discontinued early in the setting of viral nonresponse, and 30.9% discontinued despite viral response or in the absence of virologic data. Cirrhosis, diabetes, pretreatment substance use disorder, hemoglobin, and lack of hematopoietic growth factor use independently predicted discontinuation before 12 weeks (P < .05 for all). Among patients with documented early virologic responses, higher baseline levels of creatinine, depression, and lack of growth factor use predicted discontinuation from 12-24 weeks. No factors independently predicted discontinuation from 24-48 weeks among patients responding to treatment at 24 weeks. Conclusions: Early discontinuation of antiviral therapy is common. Use of growth factors was the strongest independent predictor of treatment retention before 24 weeks and should be evaluated prospectively. Early interventions may also be warranted for other risk factors for early discontinuation, such as pre-existing substance use, depression, cirrhosis, or diabetes. © 2010 AGA Institute.


Huckans M.,Northwest Hepatitis source Center | Huckans M.,Portland Medical Center | Huckans M.,Research Division | Huckans M.,Oregon Health And Science University | And 16 more authors.
Antiviral Therapy | Year: 2010

Background: Antiviral therapy for chronic infection with HCV is associated with significant neuropsychiatric side effects. Research indicates that patients with mental illness are less likely to receive antiviral therapy, despite limited data regarding the influence of antiviral therapy on psychiatric symptoms in patients with specific psychiatric disorders. The aim of this study was to determine whether antiviral therapy is associated with higher rates of psychiatric symptoms in patients with schizophrenia (SCHZ). Methods: A regional Veterans Healthcare Administration database was used to identify veterans meeting criteria for this retrospective chart review. Patients confirmed to have SCHZ and to have received antiviral therapy for HCV between 1998 and 2006 (n=30) were compared with a control group of demographically matched (age, race and gender) patients with SCHZ who did not receive antiviral therapy (n=30). Clinicians blinded to antiviral therapy status used chart notes to evaluate whether patients exhibited prominent symptoms of SCHZ, depression or mania during a 6 month pre-treatment period, the treatment period and a 6 month post-treatment period (or during equivalent periods for the control group). Results: Groups did not significantly differ in rates of symptoms of SCHZ, depression or mania during any study period. During the treatment period, groups did not significantly differ in rates of emergency room visits or inpatient hospitalizations. Conclusions: Our retrospective chart review suggests that patients with SCHZ experience similar rates of psychiatric symptoms on and off antiviral therapy. Despite limitations and constraints of the methods, our data suggest that SCHZ is not a contraindication to antiviral therapy for HCV. ©2010 International Medical Press.


Benvenga S.,Policlinico Universitario Of Messina | Benvenga S.,Messina University | Itri E.,Policlinico Universitario Of Messina | Hauser P.,Northwest Hepatitis source Center | And 7 more authors.
Gender Medicine | Year: 2011

Background: The carnitines exert neuroprotective and neuromodulatory actions, and carnitine supplementation increases locomotor activity (LMA) in experimental animals. Methods: We measured 13 indexes of LMA and 3 indexes of stereotypic activity (STA) in adult male and female caged mice. In a randomized 4-week trial, 10 males and 10 females received 50 mg/kg body weight PO l-carnitine, and another 10 males and 10 females received placebo. Results: Compared with placebo-treated females, placebo-treated males had a greater number of stereotypies (NSTs), stereotypy counts (STCs), stereotypy time (STT), and right front time (RFT), but smaller total distance traveled (TDT), margin distance (MD), number of vertical movements (NVMs), and left rear time (LRT). Compared with placebo-treated males, carnitine-treated males had greater horizontal activity (HA), movement time (MT), NVM, STT, TDT, STC, MD, LRT, and clockwise revolutions (CRs), but smaller left front time (LFT) and RFT. Compared with placebo-treated females, carnitine-treated females had greater NST, STC, STT, LFT, and RFT, but smaller NM, HA, NVM, VA, MT, anticlockwise revolutions (ACRs), CR, TDT, and MD; right rear time (RRT) remained statistically insignificant across all comparisons. Conclusions: In summary, l-carnitine caused gender differences to persist for STC, diminish for NST and STT, disappear for LRT and NVM, change in the opposite direction for TDT and MD, appear de novo for HA, VA, NM, MT, and LFT, and remain absent for RRT and ACR. Some indexes of LMA and STA are sexually dimorphic in adult mice, and l-carnitine differentially maintains, diminishes/cancels, inverts, or creates the sexual dimorphism of particular indexes. © 2011 Elsevier HS Journals, Inc. All rights reserved.


Huckans M.,Northwest Hepatitis source Center | Huckans M.,Portland Medical Center | Mitchell A.,Northwest Hepatitis source Center | Mitchell A.,Portland Medical Center | And 8 more authors.
Schizophrenia Bulletin | Year: 2010

Background: Despite disproportionately high rates of hepatitis C (HCV) among patients with severe mental illness, to date, there is scant empirical data available regarding antiviral therapy outcomes within this population. Objective: To compare antiviral therapy completion and response rates between HCV patients with vs those without schizophrenia (SCHZ). Methods: A regional Veterans Healthcare Administration database was used to identify veterans meeting criteria for this retrospective chart review. All patients confirmed to have SCHZ and to have received antiviral therapy between 1998 and 2006 (n = 30) were compared with a control group of demographically matched (HCV genotype, age, race, gender) patients with no history of SCHZ (n = 30). Results: For HCV patients with genotype 1, antiviral completion, end of treatment response (ETR), and sustained viral response (SVR) rates did not significantly differ between groups. For those with genotypes 2 and 3 combined, antiviral therapy completion rates did not significantly differ between groups; however, the SCHZ group was significantly (P < 0.050) more likely to achieve an ETR and an SVR. For all genotypes combined, the SCHZ patients were no more likely than controls to discontinue therapy early for psychiatric symptoms, medical complications, or other adverse events, and groups did not significantly differ in terms of hospitalization rates during antiviral therapy. Conclusion: Our retrospective chart review suggests that patients with SCHZ complete and respond to antiviral therapy for HCV at rates comparable with those without SCHZ. Based on these data, SCHZ should not be considered a contraindication to antiviral therapy for HCV.


Lai K.K.Y.,University of Southern California | Lai K.K.Y.,Cedars Sinai Medical Center | Jin M.,Temple University | Yuan S.,University of California at Los Angeles | And 5 more authors.
Clinical Chemistry | Year: 2011

BACKGROUND: Chemiluminescence immunoassay (CIA) is used to detect hepatitis C virus (HCV) antibody status on the basis of signal-to-cutoff (S/Co) ratios. Positive results of antibody to HCV (anti-HCV) are followed by either recombinant immunoblot assay (RIBA) to confirm anti-HCV positivity or reverse transcription (RT)-PCR to detect viremia. We hypothesized that by analyzing S/Co ratios, we could determine a strategy to reduce unnecessary supplementary testing in our population. METHODS: CIA was performed to screen for anti-HCV, and positive results were followed up with RT-PCR testing. Negative RT-PCR results were followed up with RIBA, whereas positive RT-PCR results were assumed to be RIBA positive. ROC curves were analyzed to determine the optimal S/Co ratios to predict HCV infection. RESULTS: We determined the S/Co ratios on 34 243 veteran patient samples. We found that with the CIA method 9.0% of patients had positive test results for anti-HCV. An S/Co ratio <3.0 ruled out active HCV infection and exposure with 100% negative predictive value. When the S/Co ratio was ≥20.0, positive predictive values were 98.5% compared with RIBA results, and 81.0% compared with RT-PCR results. CONCLUSIONS: RIBA is not necessary to confirm negative or positive CIA anti-HCV if the S/Co ratio is <3.0 or ≥20.0, respectively. To confirm HCV exposure, samples with an S/Co ratio between 3.0 and 19.9 should be followed up with RIBA unless PCR testing has been performed and the result is positive. Samples with an S/Co ratio ≥20.0 or positive RIBA results should be further tested by RT-PCR to determine HCV viremia status. © 2011 American Association for Clinical Chemistry.


Kanwal F.,Washington University in St. Louis | Hoang T.,Greater Los Angeles VA Healthcare System | Kramer J.,Baylor College of Medicine | Chrusciel T.,Washington University in St. Louis | And 4 more authors.
American Journal of Gastroenterology | Year: 2012

Objectives: Previous evaluations regarding the extent to which standard chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) care processes are delivered during routine clinical care are scant and have primarily relied on automated data-the validity of which is unknown. Methods: We examined adherence to 24 explicit modified Delphi panel-derived HCV-specific process measures in a cohort of 122,744 patients enrolled in the automated Veterans Administration HCV Clinical Case Registry between 2000 and 2006. We reviewed medical charts of 717 patients to compare the agreement between Registry and charts. We also estimated the effect of justifiable exceptions on measured performance in HCV by determining the proportion of patients who failed a measure but met a valid exception (i.e., patient refusal, outside care, or treatment contraindications). Results: The percentage of patients who met the individual measures varied. For example, 74% of patients received HCV genotype testing, 23% received antiviral treatment, 28% received liver biopsy, and 16% received hepatitis A vaccination. We found excellent agreement between the Registry and charts in all measures (agreement coefficients >0.75). However, exceptions to indicated care documented in charts were common for genotype testing, liver biopsy, and antiviral treatment. After accounting for these exceptions, the measure rates increased from 75 to 93% for genotype testing, 31 to 50% for liver biopsy, and from 26 to 64% for antiviral treatment. Treatment contraindications were the most common reasons for not meeting indicated care. Conclusions: Automated data missed several exceptions to care that are documented only in providers notes, thus underestimating process of care. These results have implications for future quality assessment initiatives-most of which will likely rely on automated data for process-based quality reporting. After accounting for automated data and medical record reviews, vaccinations and antiviral treatment rates in the Veterans Administration left room for improvement. © 2012 by the American College of Gastroenterology.


PubMed | Northwest Hepatitis source Center
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Antiviral therapy | Year: 2010

Antiviral therapy for chronic infection with HCV is associated with significant neuropsychiatric side effects. Research indicates that patients with mental illness are less likely to receive antiviral therapy, despite limited data regarding the influence of antiviral therapy on psychiatric symptoms in patients with specific psychiatric disorders. The aim of this study was to determine whether antiviral therapy is associated with higher rates of psychiatric symptoms in patients with schizophrenia (SCHZ).A regional Veterans Healthcare Administration database was used to identify veterans meeting criteria for this retrospective chart review. Patients confirmed to have SCHZ and to have received antiviral therapy for HCV between 1998 and 2006 (n=30) were compared with a control group of demographically matched (age, race and gender) patients with SCHZ who did not receive antiviral therapy (n=30). Clinicians blinded to antiviral therapy status used chart notes to evaluate whether patients exhibited prominent symptoms of SCHZ, depression or mania during a 6 month pre-treatment period, the treatment period and a 6 month post-treatment period (or during equivalent periods for the control group).Groups did not significantly differ in rates of symptoms of SCHZ, depression or mania during any study period. During the treatment period, groups did not significantly differ in rates of emergency room visits or inpatient hospitalizations.Our retrospective chart review suggests that patients with SCHZ experience similar rates of psychiatric symptoms on and off antiviral therapy. Despite limitations and constraints of the methods, our data suggest that SCHZ is not a contraindication to antiviral therapy for HCV.


PubMed | Northwest Hepatitis source Center
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Journal of clinical and experimental neuropsychology | Year: 2011

Determine whether adults with hepatitis C (HCV), regardless of substance use disorder, are more likely to discount delayed rewards than adults without hepatitis C, and explore the relationship between delay discounting and neuropsychological functioning.Procedures included clinical interviews, neuropsychological testing, and a delay discounting task.Regardless of substance abuse history, adults with hepatitis C were significantly more likely to choose smaller immediate rewards over larger delayed rewards. Delay discounting correlated with performance on executive functioning tasks.Increased discounting is associated with broad executive dysfunction, suggesting that HCV-associated executive dysfunction may lead to altered decision-making style.

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