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Hep C, Ribavirin and Thalassemia
Mar 5, 2001

I have HIV and chronic Hep C. A recent biopsy placed me at 2/2 with some drug induced granuloma. I was born with Thalassemia Minor and have received differing opinions on my ability to take Ribavirin in combination with Interferon as treatment for Hep C. My liver doc says probably not, my HIV doc says maybe so.Is Ribavirin always contraindicated because of my Thalassemia, what are the risks if I take it, and can Procrit lessen the risk of complications due to anemia if I do take Ribavirin?

Response from Dr. Dieterich

The last few opinions I have gathered on the subject suggest that while not exactly safe, the use of ribavirin should be considered. Use of it increases the response rate so dramatically that it seems to worth the risk. Yes if you get more anemic Procrit or epo will work. I would side with your HIV doc but do it with great caution and constant monitoring. Good luck! DTD



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