New ”wonder” pill set to revolutionise hepatitis C treatment

A new wonder pill breakthrough is hailing a new era of treatment for hundreds of thousands of people in Britain with Hepatitis C.

The treatment has been found to completely clear the virus in twice as many patients as current drugs and can halve treatment time to just six months.

This means Incivo will clear the virus in around four out of five patients compared with the old standard of care which will only clear it in two or three out of five.

The drug, called INCIVO, or telaprevir, treats those with the most common form of the illness, genotype 1, which is also hardest to tackle.

The standard treatment for Hep C is peginterferon alfa and ribavirin, which is successful in only about half of patients with genotype 1, leaving the other 50 per cent without a successful treatment.

Incivo, which is a protease inhibitor made by Janssen Pharmaceutical, is a three-times-a-day pill that will replace the current treatment administered via injection.

The treatment is a one off, 12 week course, which costs £22,398, and must be taken in combination with peginterferon alfa and ribavirin.

“Hepatitis C can be a devastating disease. However, if treated successfully, patients can avoid life-threatening liver problems such as further liver damage, cirrhosis, liver failure and liver cancer,” the Daily Express quoted Charles Gore, chief executive of the Hepatitis C Trust, as saying.

“The arrival of protease inhibitors is the first major treatment advance in more than 10 years and a significant step forward for the hep C community,” he added.

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