Future directions for investigation of fatigue in chronic hepatitis C viral infection

Chronic Illn. 2009 Jun;5(2):115-28. doi: 10.1177/1742395309104476.


Fatigue is a common and often debilitating symptom for people living with chronic hepatitis C viral infection. Numerous published reports in the past decade have attempted to address the nature and aetiology of fatigue in chronic hepatitis C; however, this field is plagued with lack of clarity about how hepatitis C virus (HCV)-related fatigue occurs and when it is experienced by the infected person. Consequently, both patients and clinicians alike are unclear about how to mediate or prevent the negative consequences of HCV-related fatigue. In the following article, the authors identify areas of ambiguity and incongruity that have evolved primarily from the underlying assumptions and methodological decisions of researchers in the field of HCV-related fatigue. Research related to fatigue in chronic illness is drawn upon to suggest future directions for investigations and interventions in the field of HCV-related fatigue. Future research needs to move beyond the subjective symptomatology of HCV-related fatigue and begin to account for the multidimensional and contextualised nature of the fatigue experience.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Fatigue / diagnosis*
  • Fatigue / etiology
  • Health Status Indicators
  • Hepatitis C, Chronic / complications*
  • Humans
  • Risk Assessment
  • Risk Factors