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FAQ: Why is it so important to take the new hepatitis C drugs correctly?

for Veterans and the Public

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Why is it so important to take the new hepatitis C drugs correctly?

When antiviral drugs are taken incorrectly, the virus isn't completely killed. Instead it rapidly creates mutations and becomes different enough from the targeted virus to escape the drug's attack. This is called drug resistance.

Developing drug resistance is a serious issue. It means that the virus has escaped the drugs and treatment won't work. Also, it could mean a patient won't respond to future hepatitis C treatments.

To prevent drug resistance, it is important to take any medication correctly, but especially DAAs such as sofosbuvir, simeprevir, boceprevir and telaprevir.

Resistance can develop quickly. It is very important to take these new antiviral medications according to instructions, on schedule, and not to skip or reduce doses.