Minimal impact of sofosbuvir and ribavirin on health related quality of life in Chronic Hepatitis C (CH-C)

Zobair M. Younossi, Maria Stepanova, Linda Henry, Edward Gane, Ira M. Jacobson, Eric Lawitz, David Nelson, Fatema Nader, Sharon Hunt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

82 Scopus citations


Background & Aims Treatment for CH-C contains interferon with substantial associated side effects and health-related quality of life (HRQL) impairment. Currently, there is no published data assessing the impact of interferon-free regimens on HRQL. The aim is to report the HRQL of patients who participated in clinical trials of sofosbuvir (SOF) for CH-C. Methods CH-C patients were treated with sofosbuvir (SOF), pegylated interferon (PegIFN), ribavirin (RBV), or placebo in different combinations and duration (POSITRON, FISSION, FUSION, and NEUTRINO phase III trials). HRQL was assessed using SF-36 at baseline, during treatment, at the end of treatment, and at follow-up, and compared between treatment arms. Results HRQL scores decreased over the course of treatment for all treatment arms in all studies; however, patients returned to their baseline score by the end of follow-up. Compared to placebo, SOF and RBV was not associated with HRQL impairment (POSITRON). Compared to SOF and RBV, HRQL was significantly more impaired in the PegIFN and RBV arm (FISSION). For those treated with SOF and RBV, there was no difference in HRQL between 12 weeks or 16 weeks of treatment (FUSION). Multivariate analysis demonstrated that depression, fatigue, and insomnia were important predictors of patients' HRQL prior, during or after treatment. Additionally, anemia and receiving interferon were predictors of HRQL impairment during treatment. Achieving sustained virologic response after 12 weeks of follow-up (SVR-12) with SOF and RBV was associated with improvement in HRQL scores from baseline. Conclusions Treatment-related HRQL impairment during SOF and RBV regimen is mild, and does not increase with longer treatment duration. Achieving SVR-12 with SOF and RBV is associated with an improvement in HRQL.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)741-747
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Hepatology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2014


  • Clinical trials
  • Hepatitis C
  • Quality of life

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hepatology


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