The Hepatitis C-Alcohol Reduction Treatment (Hep ART) intervention: Study protocol of a multi-center randomized controlled trial.
INTRODUCTION: Among patients with hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection, alcohol synergistically increases the risk of cirrhosis, hepatocellular carcinoma, and death. Randomized controlled trials of integrated models of HCV-alcohol treatment have been recommended but only performed in patients with severe alcohol use disorders. OBJECTIVES: This pragmatic randomized controlled trial seeks to compare clinical effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of integrated alcohol treatment compared to enhanced treatment as usual (TAU) on alcohol consumption and economic outcomes among patients ever infected with HCV. METHODS: Patients recruited from three liver centers who had current or prior chronic HCV and qualifying alcohol screener scores were randomly assigned to enhanced TAU or the Hepatitis C-Alcohol Reduction Treatment (Hep ART) intervention. All patients received enhanced TAU, consisting of a patient-administered alcohol screener and care from medical providers who were trained in Screening, Brief Intervention and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT), including brief motivational interviewing counseling. The Hep ART intervention combined enhanced TAU with up to six months of integrated co-located individual and/or group therapy that provided motivational, cognitive, and behavioral strategies to reduce alcohol consumption. The Timeline Followback (TLFB) Method was used to evaluate alcohol use at baseline, 3, 6, and 12 months. Primary outcomes are alcohol abstinence and fewer heavy drinking days, and for the cost-effectiveness analysis, measures included grams of alcohol consumed. DISCUSSION: This study will determine whether Hep ART, a six-month integrated alcohol treatment, compared to enhanced TAU, is both clinically effective and cost-effective in patients with a history of comorbid HCV and alcohol use.
Proeschold-Bell, RJ; Evon, DM; Makarushka, C; Wong, JB; Datta, SK; Yao, J; Patkar, AA; Mannelli, P; Hodge, T; Naggie, S; Wilder, JM; Fried, MW; Niedzwiecki, D; Muir, AJ
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