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Oct 22, 2004


My doctor has talked about starting me on Peg-intron. I saw that Pegasys may be approved specially for co-infected people. Is it better for those of us with HIV as well? What is the difference?

Thank you, Missy

Response from Dr. McGovern

Pegasys is before the FDA (the agency which reviews drug approvals) to get approval for treatment of hepatitis C in HIV infected people. There are no such plans yet for Peg-Intron of which I am aware.

The largest study of more than 800 HIV/HCV co-infected patients was recently published in the New England Journal of Medicine demonstrating efficacy and safety of Pegasys and Ribavirin in this patient population. A study of about 400 patients with HIV/HCV receiving Peg-Intron and Ribavirin will be published in Lancet soon. The data we have access to was presented at the Conference for Retroviruses. Peg-Intron had lower rates of efficacy and much higher drop-out rates. However, it is important to state that it is difficult to compare one study to another when you are talking about two different patient populations. It will also be helpful to see the published data.

However, patients with HIV/HCV should be encouraged by the international trial (called APRICOT) which is a landmark study. Dr. McGovern

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