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J Pain Symptom Manage. 2007 Oct;34(4):413-21. Epub 2007 Jul 5.

Adding HCV treatment to HIV treatment in HIV-HCV coinfected patients: the impact on the different dimensions of fatigue and self-reported side effects.

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  • 1Research Unit 379, National Institute of Health and Medical Research (INSERM), Institut Paoli Calmettes, 23 rue Stanislas Torrents, 13006 Marseilles, France.


Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is frequent among human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected patients, and is often associated with disabling symptoms such as fatigue. The purpose of this study was to assess the effect of HCV treatments on the perceived physical, cognitive, and psychosocial impact of fatigue (Fatigue Impact Scale) among HIV-HCV coinfected patients. A cross-sectional survey was conducted among 223 adult coinfected patients being followed-up in two clinical centers located in the south of France. Analysis was focused on patients who answered a self-administered questionnaire and who were being treated for their HIV infection (n=139). The cognitive, physical, and psychosocial impact of fatigue was significantly worse in patients also receiving HCV treatment (n=24) than in those receiving HIV treatment only (n=115). Along with depression, the number of self-reported treatment-related side effects was independently associated with fatigue scores after adjustment for all other characteristics. This number was significantly higher among patients on HCV treatment than among those who were not (relative risk [95% confidence interval]=1.4 [1.1; 1.7], P=0.002). In particular, skin or hair problems and general symptoms such as loss of appetite, loss of weight, fever, and headache were more prevalent among these patients. In conclusion, the combination of HIV and HCV treatments results in more self-reported side effects that exacerbate the perceived impact of fatigue among HIV-HCV coinfected patients. Effective follow-up of HCV-treated HIV-coinfected patients should, therefore, include close consideration and management of patients' subjective experience with treatments to reduce the burden of HCV-associated fatigue.

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