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Year : 2022  |  Volume : 16  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 243-266

Adjuvant use of ribavirin with treatment of hepatitis C virus in kidney transplant recipients: A systematic review and meta-analysis of real-world data

1 Department of Pharmacy Practice, National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research, S.A.S. Nagar Mohali, Punjab, India
2 Department of Hepatology, Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Pramil Tiwari
Department of Pharmacy Practice, National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research, S.A.S. Nagar, Mohali - 160 062, Punjab
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijot.ijot_10_22

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Hepatitis C virus infection among kidney transplant recipients (KTRs) is an important public health concern worldwide. Evidence on available treatments given shows a greater variability for safety and efficacy, thus we performed this large analysis to present the pooled findings. PubMed/Medline, ScienceDirect, and Google Scholar were searched to identify observational studies of both interferon-based conventional treatment (CT) and recently approved direct-acting antivirals (DAAs), published before November 2020. Meta-analysis of effectiveness outcome (sustained virological response [SVR12]) and safety data (adverse events and discontinuation rate) was performed using a random-effect model. Subgroup analysis based on ± ribavirin with both treatments was performed to assess its relevance in clinical practice. Chi-square and I2 tests were used to assess heterogeneity between the studies. Twenty-five and 9 observational records reporting on treatment with DAAs (n = 943) and CT (n = 125), respectively, are analyzed. The overall pooled estimate of SVR12 rate was found as 95.3%, (range: 92.6%–97%) with DAAs in comparison to 46.4% (range: 33.7%–59.6%) with CT. The pooled prevalence of adverse drug reactions (ADRs) in CT was higher as 47.8% than in DAAs as 23.8%, consequently showing a high discontinuation rate of 31.7% in CT as compared to 6.5% with DAAs. Subgroup analyses of both DAAs and interferon-based treatment ± ribavirin showed decreased effectiveness and increased ADR rates on adding ribavirin. The effectiveness of DDAs was found significantly higher than CT with a better safety profile in KTRs. Ribavirin did not provide any additional benefits while given in combination with either of the treatments available.

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