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Drug‑drug interactions between direct‑acting antivirals and statins in the treatment of chronic hepatitis C

Meng‑Hsuan Kuoa, Chih‑Wei Tsengb,c, Chi‑Hui Leea, Kuo‑Chih Tsengb,c*

aDepartment of Pharmacy, Dalin Tzu Chi Hospital, Buddhist Tzu Chi Medical Foundation, Chiayi, Taiwan, bSchool of Medicine, Tzu Chi University, Hualien, Taiwan, cDepartment of Internal Medicine, Dalin Tzu Chi Hospital, Buddhist Tzu Chi Medical Foundation, Chiayi, Taiwan
 

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Open Access funded by Buddhist Compassion Relief Tzu Chi Foundation

 

Abstract
 
As the first line of treatment for hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection, direct-acting antivirals (DAAs) have greater efficacy and fewer adverse effects than other treatments; however, drug‑drug interactions (DDIs) must be avoided when used in combination with other medications, such as statins. HCV patients are mostly in the need for polypharmacy, particularly the comedication of DAAs and cardiovascular drugs such as statins. This poses a risk of pharmacokinetic interactions between the two classes of drugs that may lead to severe myopathy or even rhabdomyolysis. Therefore, evaluating the severity of the DDIs and managing them is important. A multidisciplinary team‑based model of care for HCV patients receiving DAAs can review the pharmacology profiles of other drugs for relevant DDIs with the DAAs, before prescription. Such a model can also follow the patients through the therapeutic cycle to make sure that their medical regimen is safe and effective. This article reviews the comedication rate and DDI‑prevalence in HCV patients receiving statins along with the DAAs, details the mechanisms involved, gives recommendations for management, and shares our experience with a multidisciplinary team‑based care program for the treatment of HCV patients.
 
Keywords: Direct‑acting antivirals, Drug‑drug interactions, Multidisciplinary team‑based care model, Statins

 

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