Sunday, August 14, 2011

Podcast; New Treatments for Hepatitis C

Listen To Podcast Here

Hepatitis C is a serious disease. It's a blood-born virus generally associated with poor lifestyle choices, and it can lie dormant for years. When active, it scars the liver to the point where cancer, cirrhosis or liver failure is often unavoidable. But Dr. Dawn Sears, today's guest on Your Health Matters, shares hopeful news with show host Christopher Springmann. Dr. Sears, Hepatology Section Chief at Scott & White Healthcare, talks about two new drugs recently approved by the FDA, and how they're doubling the cure rate. "We’ve had two drugs that we used for the last five to eight years," says Dr. Sears, "and that’s injections of a drug called Interferon, and pills called Ribavirin. But we’ve had two new drugs which have been approved by the FDA, one of which is called Boceprevir. The other one is called Telaprevir. And what’s exciting about this is our old drugs had a cure rate of about 40 percent. But now, when we combine our old drugs with one or the other of these new pills, we end up with a cure rate of 80 percent."

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