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Hepatitis C and Fatigue

November 17, 2004

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We have long noted the number one complaint of chronic Hepatitis C patients is fatigue. The following study, presented at the latest AASLD conference in Boston, verifies this observation.

Currently there is no real medical solution to the fatigue felt by Hepatitis c patients. The best natural fatigue intervention we have seen, to date, is Fatigue Relief Plus.

If you can relate to the information in this study, perhaps you should consider giving Fatigue Relief Plus a try. It has worked for others, it very well may work for you.

Sleep and Fatigue in Patients with Chronic Hepatitis C

Fatigue and disordered sleep have been shown to affect quality of life in patients with chronic illnesses. The purpose of this study was to evaluate fatigue and sleeping behavior reported by patients with Chronic Hepatitis C (CHC).

Subjects completed the Fatigue Severity Scale (FSS) resulting in a total average fatigue score derived from 9 Likert type scale items assessing disabling fatigue (range 1-7). Subjective sleep quality was measured using the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI) in which a global score (ranging from 0-21) and 7 component scores were derived. In both cases a high score indicated more severe complaints.

Subjects were 59 CHC patients attending UCSD Adult Liver Clinics who completed both the FSS and PSQI questionnaires. CHC patients were 49% males, 57.6% Caucasian, 35.6% Latino, and 3.4% African-American. Mean age and education were 51.9 ± 9.18 and 12.4 ± 3.31 years respectively. 24 patients were non-cirrhotic, 31 were cirrhotic (Child-Turcotte-Pugh Score A=16, B=11, C=3, 1-unknown), and 4 were unknown. No patients were receiving antiviral therapy at the time of assessment.

Results

The mean FSS score was 4.69 ± 1.88 indicating greater fatigue than past reports of normal healthy adults (2.3) and patients with CHC (3.8). The mean PSQI global score was 8.97 ± 5.38.

64.4% of the patients were found to be ‘poor sleepers’ as defined by a global PSQI score of > 5. There was no significant difference between males and females on both measures.

Significant correlations were found between the FSS score and the global PSQI score (r=0.58, p < 0.01), and with 6 of the PSQI component scores: subjective sleep quality (r=0.46, p < 0.01), sleep latency (r=0.39, p < 0.01), sleep duration (r=0.26, p = 0.05), habitual sleep efficiency (r=0.44, p < 0.01), sleep disturbances (r=0.62, p < 0.01), and daytime dysfunction (r=0.65, p < 0.01).

There were no significant differences between cirrhotic and non-cirrhotic patients on the FSS and PSQI global score. Poor sleepers were 51.6% and 75% of the cirrhotic and non-cirrhotic patients respectively (p=0.10). Non-cirrhotic patients showed greater use of sleeping medications when compared to cirrhotic patients (p < 0.01).

Weekly use of sleeping medications was reported in 33% of non-cirrhotic versus 9.7% of cirrhotic patients.

In conclusion, the authors write:

  1. Patients with CHC suffer from poor quality of sleep regardless of their stage of liver disease.
  2. Fatigue is significantly correlated to poor sleep quality.

11/17/04

Reference

M 55th AASLD. October 29-November 2, 2004. Boston, MA.Carlson and others. SLEEP AND FATIGUE IN PATIENTS WITH CHRONIC HEPATITIS C. Abstract 19 (poster).

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