BRIEF REPORT: Hepatitis C Treatment of Patients With Bipolar Disorder: A Case Series

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The presence of comorbid bipolar disorder presents considerable obstacles to clinicians caring for the 4 million Americans infected with the hepatitis C virus (HCV).1,2 Interferon-α–based therapies (interferon-α) are used in combination with ribavirin to eradicate HCV infection and result in viral clearance rates of 54% to 56%.1,3 Nonetheless, interferon-α–associated neuropsychiatric adverse effects have complicated the use of HCV therapies and reduced viral clearance rates. As a result, clinicians are often reluctant to prescribe interferon-α for patients with HCV infection and preexisting bipolar disorder due to the risk of precipitating or exacerbating neuropsychiatric symptoms.4

Prim Care Companion J Clin Psychiatry 2006;8(6):361-366