Issue: 2006 > April > editorials

Hepatitis C: changing genotype distribution with important implications for patient management

H. van Soest, G.J. Boland, K.J. van Erpecum


In the Netherlands an estimated 0.1 to 0.4% of the
population are chronic hepatitis C (HCV) carriers (15,000
to 60,000 persons). HCV is characterised by genetic
heterogeneity and six different genotypes have been
identified. The distribution of HCV genotypes is relevant
for the clinician, since there are important genotype-specific differences in response to interferon-a based treatment regimens. Between 1993 and 2005 a shift was observed in the Netherlands from a dominant prevalence of genotype 1 to a situation in which genotype non-1 is becoming more important.