The best results in terms of clinical remission in chronic hepatitis C are achieved by interferon (IFN)-α treatment. We studied 255 patients affected by chronic hepatitis C infection (HCV) and divided into 3 groups. A different IFN-α therapeutic schedule was adopted in each group: A) 3 million units (MU) three times per week for 6 months; B) 3 MU three times per week for 12 months; C) 6 MU three times per week for 6 months. A sustained biohumoural and virological remission was observed in only 14.5% of the patients included in group A, in 21.6% of the patients included in group B and in 8% of the patients included in group C. The adoption of more aggressive therapeutic regimens did not offer an improvement in response or patient compliance. At present, the long term efficacy of treatment may be evaluated on the basis of both biochemical and virological data.