Clinical Topics   /   Hepatitis

HCV Eradication Lowers Glucose Levels in Veterans With Diabetes

By U.S. Medicine

PORTLAND, OR—Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is linked to diabetes and often worsens glycemic control in patients with diabetes.

A study published in Diabetes Care investigated whether eradication of HCV infection with direct-acting antiviral (DAAs) agents is associated with improved glycemic control in patients with diabetes.1

VA researchers from Portland, OR, and Seattle identified 2,435 patients with diabetes who underwent interferon-free and ribavirin-free DAA-based antiviral treatment for HCV in the national VA healthcare system. They tracked changes in average hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) level and use of antidiabetic medications one year before and after antiviral treatment between patients who achieved sustained virologic response (SVR) and those who did not.

Results indicated that, among patients with elevated baseline HbA1c, the drop in HbA1c associated with antiviral treatment was greater in those who achieved SVR (0.98%) than in those with treatment failure (0.65%) for an adjusted mean difference of 0.34.

In addition, use of antidiabetic medications decreased more in patients who achieved SVR than in those who sustained treatment failure, especially for the use of insulin, which dropped significantly from 41.3% to 38% in patients achieving SVR compared with a slight increase from 49.8% to 51% in those who had treatment failure.

“DAA-based eradication of HCV is associated with improved glycemic control in patients with diabetes as evidenced by decreased mean HbA1c and decreased insulin use,” study authors concluded. “These endocrine benefits of SVR provide additional justification for considering antiviral treatment in all patients with diabetes.”

  1. Hum J, Jou JH, Green PK, Berry K, Lundblad J, Hettinger BD, Chang M, Ioannou GN. Improvement in Glycemic Control of Type 2 Diabetes After Successful Treatment of Hepatitis C Virus. Diabetes Care. 2017 Sep;40(9):1173-1180. doi: 10.2337/dc17-0485. Epub 2017 Jun 28. PubMed PMID: 28659309.

Related Articles

VA’s Effort to Expand Telemedicine Across All States Moves Forward

The House voted in favor of a bill giving VA authority to allow its licensed healthcare providers to practice telemedicine in any state, regardless of whether the patient or provider is located on federal government property.

VA Clinicians Might Be Switching Rheumatoid Arthritis Patients to Biologics Too Quickly

The development of multiple biologic agents for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) in recent years has given patients and clinicians more options for therapy.


U.S. Medicine Recommends


More From hepatitis

Hepatitis

HCV Complications Increasing for Women Veterans

BRONX, NY — For patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD), living more than 30 miles from their nephrologist is associated with many unfavorable outcomes. They have lower rates of clinic visit adherence, more limited access... View Article

Hepatitis

VA Could Soon Achieve ‘Near Complete Eradication’ of Hepatitis C

Over the next year or so, the remarkable transformation of hepatitis C (HCV) treatment at the VA will likely reach some type of equilibrium, a new study suggested.

Cancer

Lymphoma, Other Cancers Linked to HCV

Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is known to cause hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and subtypes of non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL).

Hepatitis

Cirrhosis Expected to Peak by 2021 in VA; Liver Cancer Epidemic Continues

For the VA, the combination of effective treatment options and much lower prevalence of HCV in younger veterans may offer a light at the end of the tunnel — and a turning point in the steady rise of HCV-associated complications such as cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) in only a few years.

Hepatitis

Senate Committee Chairman Decries High Costs for Potential HCV Cure

VA Suggests High Price Could Be Offset Future Savings

Facebook Comment

Subscribe to U.S. Medicine Print Magazine

U.S. Medicine is mailed free each month to physicians, pharmacists, nurse practitioners, physician assistants and administrators working for Veterans Affairs, Department of Defense and U.S. Public Health Service.

Subscribe Now

Receive Our Email Newsletter

Stay informed about federal medical news, clinical updates and reports on government topics for the federal healthcare professional.

Sign Up