Glossary of terms


This is a glossary of terms used on the website which you may not know the meaning of.

Hepatitis C RNA: Hepatitis C RNA (ribonucleic acid) is the genetic material of the virus. The amount of this material determines your viral load.

Baseline Viral Load: Amount of Hepatitis C virus (RNA) in the blood before treatment starts. High baseline viral load means that the virus is reproducing rapidly and may mean that viral cure or SVR is less likely.

Early Viral Response (EVR): HCV RNA not detectable at week 12 of treatment. Not reaching EVR predicts a low likelihood of achieving viral cure or SVR

Rapid Viral Response (RVR): Hepatitis C RNA is not detectable in the blood at week 4 of treatment. This predicts a high likelihood of achieving viral cure or SVR.

End of Treatment Response (ETR): Hepatitis C RNA not detectable in the blood at the end of treatment.

HCV RNA is not
detectable in the blood at week 4 of treatment1
; predicts a
high likelihood of achieving viral cure/SVR.7

Sustained Viral Response (SVR): Hepatitis C virus not detectable in the blood 6 months after treatment ends.

Response Guided Therapy (RGT): Response guided therapy is a model of Hepatitis C treatment where decisions on treatment are guided by how quickly the virus responds to treatment. For example if a patient achieves RVR they are eligible for a shorter duration of treatment.

Relapse: After dropping to undetectable levels, Hepatitis C virus is detected again in blood after treatment ends.

ALT (Alanine aminotransferase) Levels: ALT is an enzyme found in various body tissues, but most commonly associated with the liver. Typically a female should have ALT levels of equal to or less than 34 units per litre and men should have equal to or less than 45 units per litre. Higher levels than these suggest the existence of other medical problems such as hepatitis or diabetes.

Weight based ribavirin dosage: Dosages of ribavirin tailored to a patient's weight for best possible effectiveness.

Genetic factors: Everybody has a unique genetic make up. There are various genetic factors that may predict how likely you are to clear Hepatitis C. An important example which you may hear your healthcare professional discuss is your Il28B gene. These gentic factors can also help inform which treatment you may undergo for Hepatitis C and how long you may need to stay on treatment.

IL28B gene: This is a gene which we all have in our DNA. There are 3 genotypes of IL28B called CC, CT and TT. People with the CC genotype have a stronger immune response to Hepatitis C and are more likely to clear the virus naturally. Before starting treatment you get tested to find out which IL28B gene you have.

Shared Equipment: For injecting drug use this includes, spoons, filters, water, syringes, needles, table surfaces, foil. Also do not share pipes used to smoke crack cocaine, bank notes for snorting drugs. Hepatitis C can survive for weeks outside the body even in tiny specs of blood, so be blood aware when preparing drugs. Where possible, clean the area used for preparing drugs following practice around cleaning blood spills.



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