• HCV;
  • interferon;
  • QOL


Background and Aim

Chronic infection with hepatitis C virus (HCV) decreases health-related quality of life (HRQOL). The present study was planned to investigate the impact of HRQOL of patients with chronic hepatitis C (CHC) on the outcomes of therapy with pegylated interferon and ribavirin (RBV), in addition to IL28B polymorphisms.


The present study enrolled 228 CHC patients and assessed their HRQOLs prospectively with the 36-item short-form health survey.


The patients with CHC have lower physical HRQOL status than the general population (P = 0.037, the Z-test). The patients with advanced liver diseases exhibited further decreases in HRQOL (P = 0.036, Spearman's rank correlation coefficient). The score of total HRQOL was significantly lower in the group with sustained virological response (SVR) to the therapy with pegylated interferon and RBV than the non-SVR group (P = 0.031, the Mann–Whitney U-test), with significantly lower scores of mental component and its comprising subscales in the SVR group. Stepwise multivariate logistic regression analysis showed that low HRQOL score ≤ 400 points was significantly associated with SVR (odds ratio = 2.4, P = 0.013), independently from high platelet counts, low HCV RNA, favorable single-nucleotide polymorphism type of IL28B, and HCV serotype 2. The patients with low HRQOL score will have significantly less decrease in HRQOL score by 4 weeks of the treatment than those with high HRQOL score at baseline (P = 0.0045).


HRQOL is one of the significant predictor of the outcomes of therapy with pegylated interferon and RBV independently from IL28B polymorphism.