WHO to issue hepatitis C treatment guidelines
Paris, April 3, 2014
The World Health Organization (WHO) is releasing the organization’s first global guidelines on treating hepatitis C on April 9 in London, on the eve of the International Liver Congress.
An estimated 130 to 150 million people are chronically infected with the hepatitis C virus resulting in between 350,000 and 500,000 deaths every year. Although many people may not be aware for decades that they are infected with the virus, many will die of liver cancer or cirrhosis, said a statement from WHO.
The recent registration of new, safer and more effective oral hepatitis medicines is a game-changer in hepatitis C treatment, stated the global health body.
New treatment can provide a cure for most people with chronic hepatitis C, and even more new medicines are in the pipeline for release in the next few years, providing new hope for persons with this infection, it added.
Hepatitis C virus is most commonly transmitted through exposure to contaminated blood. Those at risk include people undergoing invasive medical procedures and therapeutic injections where poor infection control is in place and those exposed to contaminated injecting and skin piercing equipment (including through injecting drug use, tattooing and body piercing).
The guidelines provide recommendations on screening for hepatitis C infection, on medical care to slow the progress of the disease and on safe and effective treatments to cure chronic hepatitis C infection.-TradeArabia News Service