Alcohol dependence presents a significant barrier to hepatitis C treatment among patients with HIV compared with non-alcohol substance dependence, according to a presentation at the International Symposium on Hepatitis Care in Substance Users.
According to the presentation by Kyle W. Prochno, a research coordinator from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, alcohol-specific dependence was particularly prohibitive to HCV treatment initiation among patients with HIV, even when applying a treatment initiation-promoting intervention.
The study comprised 53 patients with HCV/HIV coinfection who had not engaged in HCV treatment within 12 months. Mean patient age was 53.9 years, 71.7% were men, 49.1% were Hispanic and 41.5% were black. Overall, 81.1% received a diagnosis of lifetime substance dependence, including cocaine (69.8%), alcohol (47.2%) and opioids (47.2%).