With an emphasis on clinical knowledge and practical tips on management given the expanding array of treatment options, this year’s Hepatitis C SIG program is designed to help clinicians move things forward by highlighting the more challenging groups of patients who may not be responding to treatment.
“With the new agents available for hepatitis C, many patients are being treated and cured. It’s a wonderful time,” said Andrew J. Muir, MD, FAASLD, who is program chair along with Norah Terrault, MD, MPH, FAASLD. “We wanted this program to help clinicians with some of the challenging groups that are still out there: patients with renal failure, patients who have resistance, and people who inject drugs.”
Dr. Muir noted that there are some treatments that are helpful for patients with renal failure and those who inject drugs, but he said other options are on the horizon.
“We just had our first pangenotypic regimen approved, but there are others coming, particularly for patients who may have failed therapy or some of our other challenging patient groups. It helps to be aware of what else is coming as you make a decision for this patient now. Are they best served by what is now available or by some of the regimens that are coming?” he said.
The session will open with a presentation by David Roth, MD, about hepatitis C treatment in patients with renal failure. Dr. Muir noted that this is a particularly challenging group, so it can be a matter of choosing the most appropriate regimen for each patient.
“Many of these patients may be interested in kidney transplant, and at some centers there are treatments before kidney transplantation, while at other centers patients may delay treatment because they can accept a hepatitis C positive kidney and that may even reduce their waiting time for transplant,” he said.
Next, Jason Grebely, PhD, will share insights into the work being done in Australia on the evaluation and treatment of patients with hepatitis C who inject drugs.
“This is obviously an issue for us in the United States with our recent surge of cases of hepatitis C in young people related to injection drug use,” said Dr. Muir. “It will be important for us to learn from their experience in Australia and their approach as we think about how we might consider this in our communities as well.”
Dr. Muir said he was also particularly interested in the presentation on resistance by Jordan J. Feld, MD, MPH, who will talk about the available testing for resistance, the terminology and how to use the testing to minimize or reduce the number of people who fail therapy.
The session will end with a next steps discussion by Nancy Reau, MD, FAASLD, who will outline the pangenotypic regimens coming forward and how those will change the way clinicians approach hepatitis C care.
“The reality is that hepatitis C treatment is relatively straightforward for the strong majority of our patients. But when you have somebody who either has failed therapy or maybe has end-stage renal disease, the comfort that clinicians feel when they understand the nuances and how to determine the best approach for a patient is key,” said Dr. Muir. “We are taking the latest research, including what’s going on during The Liver Meeting®, and translating that into clinical care so that the participants leave the meeting feeling they have good grasp of current issues in the management of these patients.”
HCV Symposium (Hepatitis C SIG)
4:45 pm – 6:45 pm Monday
CC: Auditorium and Balcony