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Keywords:

  • Asian Americans;
  • genotype;
  • HCV;
  • sustained virologic response;
  • treatment outcomes

Summary.  Chronic hepatitis C is generally underappreciated in Asian Americans, and most pivotal studies were conducted in western countries and only included a small numbers of Asian patients. Our goal was to examine and compare treatment outcomes in these patients with genotypes 1 vs 2/3 vs 6. We performed a retrospective cohort study of 167 consecutive treatment-naïve Asian American patients treated with pegylated interferon (PEG IFN) plus ribavirin (RBV) at two community clinics in Northern California from 12/00 to 1/08. Primary outcome was sustained virological response rate by intention-to-treat analysis. The overall completion rate was 76%, and treatment adherence (completion of ≥75–80% PEG IFN + RBV dose for ≥75–80% of intended duration) was 74%. Significant depression was noted in only 4% of patients. Sustained virologic response in patients with genotype 6 treated for 48 weeks was similar to that seen in those with genotype 2/3 (74%vs 75%, P = 0.89) and significantly higher than those with genotype 1 (74%vs 49%, P = 0.016). On multivariate analysis inclusive of sex, age, body mass index (≤25 vs >25) and viral load, only treatment adherence and genotype (2/3 and 6 treated for 48 weeks) were found to be significant predictors of sustained virologic response. We conclude that significant depression is rare in Asian American patients (4%). Patients with genotype 6 treated for 48 weeks appear to have a similar treatment response rate as patients with genotype 2/3 and a significantly higher response rate than those with genotype 1.