Author(s): Garcia TJ, Lara PH, Morimoto TP, Higasiaraguti M, Perejo AM,
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Abstract OBJECTIVE: To review and compare side effects of hepatitis C treatment with pegylated interferon and ribavirin at the CRIE of the Hospital Mário Covas (Santo André), São Paulo, Brazil, from February 23 to May 5, 2011. METHODS: Cross-sectional study through questionnaire, with a non-probability sample comprised of 340 patients that had received at least one dose of the medication. RESULTS: Side effects presented were fatigue (82.9\%), arthralgia and/or myalgia (76.8\%), weight loss (71.8\%), headache (67.6\%), listlessness (65.9\%), depression and/or irritability (64.4\%), itching (60.6\%), fever (59.1\%), alopecia (51.5\%), dry cough (34.1\%), nausea (11.7\%), inappetence (11.7\%), and dizziness (7.9\%). Up to 19 symptoms were reported during treatment. Only four patients (1.2\%) did not present side effects. When comparing the types of interferon, it was observed that alpha-2b caused an average of 8.01 symptoms per patient, while alpha-2a was responsible for an average of 7.50 symptoms. Patients using interferon alpha-2b showed more fever, weight loss, headache, arthralgia and/or myalgia, fatigue, listlessness, depression and/or irritability, and dry cough than patients using alpha-2a, who had more alopecia and itching. CONCLUSION: The study shows a high morbidity related to the treatment, as only 1.2\% of the patients showed no side effects. In the sample, the pegylated interferon alpha-2b was responsible for higher prevalence of fever and weight loss when compared to alpha-2a, and this was a statistically significant relation (p < 0.05).
This article was published in Rev Assoc Med Bras (1992)
and referenced in Journal of Clinical & Experimental Pharmacology