San Francisco, CA — September 12, 2017 — Napo Pharmaceuticals, Inc. ( Napo ), a human health company developing and commercializing novel gastrointestinal prescription products from plants used traditionally in rainforest areas, and a wholly-owned subsidiary of Jaguar Health, Inc. ( NASDAQ: JAGX ) ( Jaguar ), announced today the results of a survey of 271 U.S. board certified gastroenterologists, which indicate that the number one gastrointestinal ( GI ) complaint for people living with HIV/AIDS is diarrhea. The study was conducted for Napo by Schlesinger Associates, a leading global data collection provider specializing in online surveys.
"While it's typically not the main reason patients come to see me, frequently my patients with HIV inform me that they suffer from chronic diarrhea. Worth noting, diarrhea appears to be more common in patients who have been HIV-positive for several years; this is most likely due to HIV enteropathy, which is the effect of the virus on the lining of the intestine," noted Dr. Maurizio Bonacini, Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco. "Diarrhea is a significant problem in many HIV patients, and unfortunately, they think there is nothing they can do and that they just have to live with it."
Highlights of the survey of U.S. board certified gastroenterologists include:
- 93 percent of U.S. gastroenterologists see patients with HIV/AIDS in their practice
- 84 percent rank diarrhea in the top three complaints of HIV/AIDS patients
- 53 percent indicated diarrhea is the number one complaint in HIV/AIDS patients
- 65 percent of diarrhea in HIV/AIDS patients is chronic
Only 53 percent of gastroenterologists were aware of Mytesi® ( crofelemer ), the only drug that has been specifically studied in and FDA-approved for use in managing diarrhea in people living with HIV.
"Chronic diarrhea remains a significant, under-reported complaint of HIV/AIDS patients, and it is a problem that will increase significantly as the HIV+ population gets older. According to data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, by 2020 more than 70 percent of Americans with HIV are expected to be 50 or older," stated Lisa Conte, Jaguar's president and CEO. "We are launching educational awareness campaigns to healthcare professionals, people living with HIV, and patient advocates. At the 2017 United States Conference on AIDS this past week, where Napo hosted a group of 20 healthcare activists and advocates, we heard patients discuss issues with diarrhea ranging from the impact on their quality of life, to embarrassment, to the concern over health implications when one has lost control of an important body function. Moreover, diarrhea is known to affect adherence to ART regimens. Lack of adherence to ART regimens raises concern over the potential for development of resistant viral strains. Treatment of diarrhea in this population remains an area of high need, and we are working to make sure both people living with HIV and their healthcare providers are aware of and have access to Mytesi®."
To view an infographic of the study results click here: enoughdiarrhea.com/infographic/ .