Laos to Use New Drug to Cure Alcoholic Hepatitis

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Lao, Thai, and Malaysian health professionals have come together to work on ways to improve the management of alcoholic hepatitis cases in the region.

Vientiane Times reports that the participating countries shared the latest knowledge on hepatitis with the Belgian pharmaceutical company Eurodrug and discussed the benefits of using Metadoxine in patients who have alcohol-related liver disease.

The health professionals discussed the role of the drug Metadoxine in the management of liver conditions at the meeting earlier this month.

Dr. Sengdao Vannarath, a specialist at Mahosot hospital, said that long-term alcohol consumption is one of the main causes of hepatitis and death from liver disease.

According to Dr. Sengdao, most people in Laos are unaware of the drugs available to treat the condition and the ways to prevent alcoholic hepatitis even though treatment and prevention options for hepatitis is limited in Laos.

Eurodrug’s Business Development Manager for Asia, Ms Htoo Htoo Mai, informed that Metadoxine has been used in Malaysia and Europe to reduce alcohol cravings and consumption.

According to a 2011 research published in the British Medical Journal (BMJ), studies using oral Metadoxine in individuals with alcoholic liver disease who remained abstinent as well as those who resumed drinking showed positive outcomes.

Director General of the Centre for Medical Equipment and Drug Supply under the Ministry of Public Health, Dr. Many Thammavong, said Viengthong Pharma Import-Export Co., Ltd. have recently been authorized to import Metadoxine for use in the treatment of alcoholic hepatitis.

Viral hepatitis is the seventh largest cause of death globally and the only communicable illness with a growing fatality rate. Annually, viral hepatitis kills at least as many people as tuberculosis, AIDS, and malaria combined.