Hepatitis C Drug Sales Soar as Incivek & Victrelis Duke It OutPosted: October 31, 2011
Copyright 2011, by Will Blesch
Vertex Pharmaceuticals’ new drug, “Incivek” has beaten Merck’s “Victrelis’s” sales by a gigantic margin. According to an article in the New York Times, the tally was “$420 million for Incivek and $31 million for Victrelis.”
This is good news for the pharmaceutical companies.
However, because Incivek, also known as telaprevir, costs $49,000 wholesale for an entire course of treatment it is beyond the scope of most patients’ ability to pay. In addition, although Incivek and Victrelis both are major breakthroughs in the treatment of Hepatitis C, there remains no 100% cure.
Pretty expensive for something that doesn’t offer a full proof cure eh?
Still, a high cure rate is better than no cure rate. I applaud the fact that both Merck and Vertex have developed drugs that actually are highly effective as a Hepatitis remedy.
But come on. How is the little guy going to pay for a Hepatitis Remedy that costs more money than most make in a year?
Do Merck and/or Vertex have plans on how to bring their costs down? Do they plan on passing any savings on to the consumer? Or, are they going to maintain the image of the evil pharmaceutical giants that take advantage as long as they rake in the almighty dollar? Moreover, why do we constantly get treated to FDA approved drugs that have such gigantic side-effects?
For instance, Incivek, on their own website, lists the following as side effects:
“The most common side effects include itching, nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, anal or rectal problems (including hemorrhoids, discomfort or burning around or near the anus, itching around or near the anus), taste changes, and tiredness.”
Yeah…I want diarrhea, vomiting and anal itching and burning. What about Victrelis? Their site says their drug’s side effects include: fatigue, anemia, nausea, headache, and dysgeusia (the distortion of the sense of taste.)
Let’s change the subject just for a moment. Are there natural alternatives? Is there natural Hepatitis remedy on the market? If there is, is it affordable? Effective? Safe?
What else is out there other than FDA approved drugs? (All of which have side effects by the way as you saw above.)
According to WebMD and an article written by Stephanie Watson, there are a number of controversial, herbal remedies for Hepatitis C. Remember that side effects are possible even with herbal, natural remedies so you should talk with your doctor before buying.
According to this article, natural remedies include “milk thistle, licorice root, ginseng, and thymus extract, to therapies like massage, chiropractic care, and relaxation techniques. Up to 40% of people with hepatitis C who have failed conventional treatment say they have tried other therapies, and many report less fatigue, an immune system boost, and better gastrointestinal function as a result.”
Another, newer Hepatitis remedy on the market is Gene-Eden-Blue. According to the makers, “Gene-Eden Blue is extremely safe. To date, there have been no reported side effects whatsoever. Each Gene-Eden capsule contains a patented formula of six natural ingredients including selenium, phylanthus amarus, curcumin, quercetin, cinnamon, and licorice… each at a uniquely selected dose. In addition, each bottle is GMP certified.”
People can learn more about that product at http://www.hepatitis-remedy.com/.
In any case, even though there are side effects, WebMD says that Incivek and Victrelis “greatly boost the chances that hepatitis C treatment will result in a cure — that is, a “sustained viral response” or SVR. Although hepatitis C virus (HCV) may not be totally eliminated, an SVR essentially means a person will never have to worry about developing complications of hepatitis C disease.”
I’m personally glad to see advancements against viral diseases of any kind. Incivek and Victrelis certainly exemplify that.