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J Hepatol. 1998 Aug;29(2):224-32.

Reinforced regimen of interferon alfa-2a reduces the incidence of cirrhosis in patients with chronic hepatitis C: a multicentre randomised trial. Multicentre GER-CYT-04 Group.

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  • 1Service d'Hépatogastroentérologie, Hôpital Beaujon, Clichy, France.



Our aim was to assess and compare the long-term effect of interferon at standard (6 months) and reinforced dose and duration regimens in chronic hepatitis C.


A multicentre institutional trial included 244 previously untreated patients with chronic hepatitis C, without cirrhosis, who were randomly allocated to either standard (3 MU thrice a week for 24 weeks; n=120) or reinforced (6 MU daily for 12 days, 6 MU thrice a week for 22 weeks, 3 MU thrice a week for 24 weeks; n=124) regimens. The main endpoint was sustained ALT response at 72 weeks (18 months); secondary end-points were virological (branched DNA and PCR) and histological responses (incidence of cirrhosis) at month 18.


Sustained ALT response was observed in five patients (4%, 95% confidence interval 0-8%) in the standard group and in 21 patients (18%, 95% confidence interval 11-25%), from the reinforced group (p=0.002), in agreement with virological response in 21 (81%) patients. Cirrhosis at month 18 was observed in ten (10%) patients in the standard group and one (1%) in the reinforced group (p=0.004).


The standard regimen of interferon, in chronic hepatitis C, confers a minimal sustained response rate at 18 months and may not prevent the occurrence of cirrhosis. Reinforced regimens allow sustained response to be reached in a limited number of patients and reduce the risk of cirrhosis during 18 months of follow-up.

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  • ACP J Club. 1999 Mar-Apr;130(2):37.
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