Font Size

Hepatitis C (cont.)

Hepatitis C Medications

  • Patients are treated with a combination of an injectable medicine called pegylated interferon alpha (Pegasys, PEG-Intron) and an oral antiviral drug called ribavirin (Virazole). Treatment continues for weeks or months; the exact duration of treatment depends on the response and results of blood tests.
  • A new class of medications called protease inhibitors have been approved for the treatment of genotype type 1 HCV. Examples include telaprevir (Incivek - This drug was discontinued by the manufacturer, but will be available until October 2014) and boceprevir (Victrelis). These medications are given along with pegylated interferon and ribavirin. In some cases, adding a protease inhibitor can shorten the overall duration of treatment.

Most people tolerate these drugs, although side effects are common. Side effects may be mild or debilitating. Women taking these medications for HCV should avoid getting pregnant during treatment. Common side effects of HCV treatment include the following:

These medications can have other, less common side effects that may be serious. The patient should discuss these with their health care provider before starting treatment.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 11/5/2014
Medical Editor:

Must Read Articles Related to Hepatitis C

Cirrhosis Cirrhosis is a scarring of the learn more >>
Hepatitis C Medications
Current and Future Medications for Hepatitis C Inflammation of the liver caused by infection with the hepatitis C virus (HCV) is referred to as hepatitis C. There are a variety of treatments available for he...learn more >>
Fatigue Fatigue is a common health complaint by individuals. Fatigue is also referred to as feeling weary, tired, exhausted, lethargic, and a lack of energy. There are ...learn more >>

Patient Comments & Reviews

The eMedicineHealth doctors ask about Hepatitis C:

Hepatitis C - Treatment

What was the treatment for your hepatitis C?

Hepatitis C - Symptoms

What are your hepatitis C symptoms?

Hepatitis C - Diagnosis

What was or has been the treatment for your hepatitis C, and was it effective?

Hepatitis C - Medication

What medications have you been prescribed to treat hepatitis C, and were they effective?

Read What Your Physician is Reading on Medscape

Hepatitis C »

The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates 170 million individuals worldwide are infected with hepatitis C virus (HCV).

Read More on Medscape Reference »

Medical Dictionary