Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
May 29, 2022, 04:48:51 am

Login with username, password and session length


Members
  • Total Members: 6275
  • Latest: sharmyn
Stats
  • Total Posts: 55070
  • Total Topics: 4842
  • Online Today: 36
  • Online Ever: 1314
  • (June 22, 2016, 05:23:42 am)
Users Online
Users: 0
Guests: 39
Total: 39

Welcome

Welcome to the Hep Forums, a round-the-clock discussion area for people who have Hepatitis B, C or a co-infection, their friends and family and others with questions about hepatitis and liver health. Check in frequently to read what others have to say, post your comments, and hopefully learn more about how you can reach your own health goals.

Privacy Warning: Please realize that these forums are open to all, and are fully searchable via Google and other search engines. If this concerns you, then do not use a username or avatar that are self-identifying in any way. We do not allow the deletion of anything you post in these forums, so think before you post.
  • The information shared in these forums, by moderators and members, is designed to complement, not replace, the relationship between an individual and his/her own physician.
  • All members of these forums are, by default, not considered to be licensed medical providers. If otherwise, users must clearly define themselves as such.
  • Product advertisement (including links); banners; and clinical trial, study or survey participation—is strictly prohibited by forums members unless permission has been secured from the Hep Forum Moderators.
Finished Reading This? You can collapse this or any other box on this page by clicking the symbol in each box.

Author Topic: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...  (Read 37659 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Roger

  • Member
  • Posts: 171
I talked to a pharmacist at Gilead's pharmacy line Friday.  She told me that Harvoni does not 'kill' the virus, it stops the virus from replicating.  That the virus is still present, etc.

What does that mean?

I thought Harvoni actually killed the virus.  If the virus is still inside of us, at UND, does that mean that our blood could still infect another person?

If the virus can not replicate, does it just sit in one place and eat away at that particular place in the liver - but no more?

You can tell, I'm a bit confused on this topic!

Who understands this, please?





Genotype 1a
2006 - Dx
2009 Biopsy      - Stage 2
2013 FibroScan - Stage 2
2014 FibroSure - Stage 3

Started Harvoni 11.21.2014 Viral Load - 313,593
12.26.2014 - UND (at 5 weeks)
At 8 Weeks - UND
EOT 02/12/15 - UND
12 Week EOT Blood Work - UND

Offline ma snart

  • Member
  • Posts: 65
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #1 on: February 22, 2015, 02:09:31 pm »
That is correct, and no you will not ever be able to donate blood, there technically is no cure, just the ability to prevent the virus from replicating.
The virus lives only so many days and if it cannot reproduce then it becomes UNDETECTABLE, but you will always test positive for the anti bodies that will always be in your blood.
Its the best there is at this time.
Snart
Helen 54 yr old female
Geno 1B since 84 from transfusion
started Harvoni on 11-22-14 with 8.5 million viral
After 8 days 933 viral and normal AST and ALT
Week 10 viral load  UNDETECTED
Week 17    detected 19
Week 18    detected 21
Week 20    UNDETECTED   Doctor did prescribe Ribavirin, but have not taken it yet as we are thinking that weeks 17,18 had to have been mishandled.
All other test have shown normal levels.
Week 21 results  on Tuesday 4-21
Week 4 post Harvoni 24 week plan UNDETECTED!!

Offline Mike

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 999
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #2 on: February 22, 2015, 02:55:08 pm »
It is correct to say that Harvoni does not kill the virus - it prevents the virus from replicating.

It is important to understand that the HCV virus cannot survive without replicating itself and that individual viruses die off after a period of time. The goal of treatment is to stop replication fast and long enough, so that individual virus die off without replicating.

Once replication is stopped and the last virus dies off, full clearance is achieved which equates to being cured.

New treatments appear to complete the replication cessation/die-off process within 8-24 weeks (depending on geneotype, viral load and other factors; hence the different lengths of treatment).

Another way to understand this relates to eradicating an insect infestation in a home. Many pesticides due not kill the insect; rather they prevent the insect from reproducing. Once the individual insect's lifespan is completed, it dies. If If enough die off without reproducing offspring, the infestation is over.

The same is true with HCV.

Lastly, once an individual is exposed to the HVC virus, the body produces antibodies to fight the initial infection. These antibodies will always be present.

However, having the antibodies does not mean you have HCV.

For example, many of us received childhood vaccinations against a host of viruses (measles, mumps and so on). The goal of the vaccinations is to entice the bodies immune system to produce antibodies to fight a real infection, should one be exposed to the actual virus.

Once vaccinated, the antibodies (in general) will always be present and can be confirmed by simple antibody tests.

If for example, a person is tested to determine the presence of the measles antibodies to ensure proper vaccination, you would not say the person "has or had the measles" - rather it would be concluded that the person was exposed (vaccinated) against the virus.

The same is true with HCV - the antibodies will always be present (even though the infection was cleared).

Best wishes, Mike

Genotype 1a
Treated 2001 with PEG and RIBV
Treated in 2014 SOL+PEG+RIBV
Cured July 2014

Offline dragonslayer

  • Member
  • Posts: 873
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #3 on: February 22, 2015, 03:00:53 pm »
Thanks Mike.. Still a little confused.  If we have antibodies, why arent we HCV resistant after treatment?  Why can we become reinfected?  Are we still in danger of spreading the disease after SVR?   IF not, then why cant we donate blood?   etc, etc, etc..

Lastly, you say Harvoni doesnt kill the virus.. Yet, you also said once replication is halted, the virus dies? 
« Last Edit: February 22, 2015, 03:02:36 pm by dragonslayer »
Paul

DX 2008
Started Harvoni 11/26/14 for 8 wks
Completed 8 wks Harvoni 01/20/15
EOT RNA Quant result:  Detected 29
7.5 wk post tx: Detected < LLOQ(12)
11 wk post tx: UNDETECTED SVR12
24 wk post tx: UNDETECTED SVR24; AST 26; ALT 22; ALP 73
48 wk post tx: UNDETECTED SVR48; AST 18; ALT 18; ALP 70
GT 1a
vl 2.4mil
2008 bpx: Stage&Grade 0
2013 bpx: Stage&Grade: 0-1
IL28B: TT
likely infected early '70s

Offline Islandgirl

  • Member
  • Posts: 295
  • Started Harvoni 12/3/14 - EOT 2/25/15
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #4 on: February 22, 2015, 03:09:59 pm »
Thanks Mike, good explanation.  Like Dragonslayer, I'd like to know a little more too.  ...Islandgirl
1b, treatment naive, positive for Hep C since 1994; thought to be transmitted via blood transfusions in 1976
Started Harvoni 12/3/14, EOT 2/25/15
12/31/14 labs - Virus Undetected, ALT/18, AST/34
3/25/15 labs - 1 mo post 12 wk Harvoni TX Virus Undetected!!  :) ....Islandgirl

Offline Mike

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 999
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #5 on: February 22, 2015, 03:34:12 pm »
The HCV virus is pernicious and very good at avoiding our body's natural immune systems.

The antibodies we naturally produce to fight the virus are generally ineffective in combating the initial infection, which is why most of us develop a chronic infection.

Basically, if it didn't work the first time, it wont work the second time.

There are some exceptions, and some fight off the initial infection and naturally clear the virus. However, this is the exception rather than the rule.

Because of this, it is very important to know how the virus is contracted and avoid any behaviors or situations that could result in re-exposure.

Lastly, the HCV virus has a life spam and the individual virus, like all life, naturally die; hence the need for virus replication to maintain an active infection.

Best wishes, Mike
« Last Edit: February 22, 2015, 03:36:37 pm by Mike »
Genotype 1a
Treated 2001 with PEG and RIBV
Treated in 2014 SOL+PEG+RIBV
Cured July 2014

Offline duwbdawg

  • Member
  • Posts: 6
  • "It's Your Health, Make Time!"
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #6 on: February 22, 2015, 03:39:12 pm »
Much of the inflammatory response of the body detected in elevated liver enzymes is due to your immune system in a constant battle to rid your body of the infection. Some is due to the viral replication process as well, but the fibrosis occurs due to scarring from damage from the process of dead hepatocytes (liver cells). Most people walk around with undetectable levels of contagions, like the cold or flu virus, but are able to keep it at bay with their first level immune response. Some can not and develop a full blown (frank) clinical illness. This requires second and third level immune responses. Essentially, Harvoni knocks this infection back to a first level immune response. Undetectable does not mean completely eradicated. Although we hope it does, time will tell. Therefore, continue to live a healthy lifestyle, and continue to practice safe preventative measures for transmittal of your blood, especially blood donation. If someone gets your blood, it will show the positive antibody and may even contain undetectable levels of virions. One virus if given the right environment will do what all biological beings do best. Multiply.
Infected: 1985
DX: 1998
HepC 1a
8 weeks Harvoni 2/23/2015
"Gesundheit!"

Offline Mike

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 999
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #7 on: February 22, 2015, 04:10:01 pm »
Undetectable viral load does not mean cured, as the quantitative tests are not sensitive to exact zero mark. That's were SVR comes it to play.

Simply put: A single HCV virus can replicate in to the  millions (detectable levels) in 12-24 weeks. Virological research, which has increased our understanding of the life cycle of HCV over the past 30 years, consistently indicates that, once SVR24 is attained, the virus is eradicated.

This is why the clinical term "cured" is now being applied.

There is, however, a very, very small group of individuals (>.001%) who, despite having attained an SVR24, have a reemergence of the virus after this milestone. The prevailing wisdom is that this is due to reinfection and/or false-negative test results at the SVR24 mark.

Therefore, we can safely conclude, with a highest degree of medical certainty, that, once an SVR24 is attained, the HCV virus has been eradicated and the individual is cured.

Best wishes, Mike

Genotype 1a
Treated 2001 with PEG and RIBV
Treated in 2014 SOL+PEG+RIBV
Cured July 2014

Offline dragonslayer

  • Member
  • Posts: 873
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #8 on: February 22, 2015, 04:12:24 pm »
And, once SVR24 is reached, can the individual then donate blood, and know that it will be impossible for him to infect anybody else?
Paul

DX 2008
Started Harvoni 11/26/14 for 8 wks
Completed 8 wks Harvoni 01/20/15
EOT RNA Quant result:  Detected 29
7.5 wk post tx: Detected < LLOQ(12)
11 wk post tx: UNDETECTED SVR12
24 wk post tx: UNDETECTED SVR24; AST 26; ALT 22; ALP 73
48 wk post tx: UNDETECTED SVR48; AST 18; ALT 18; ALP 70
GT 1a
vl 2.4mil
2008 bpx: Stage&Grade 0
2013 bpx: Stage&Grade: 0-1
IL28B: TT
likely infected early '70s

Offline Mike

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 999
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #9 on: February 22, 2015, 04:26:27 pm »
No. Under current guidelines and safe practices, if HCV antibodies are present, the blood cannot be used and must be destroyed. Therefore, you cannot donate blood.

Mike
Genotype 1a
Treated 2001 with PEG and RIBV
Treated in 2014 SOL+PEG+RIBV
Cured July 2014

Offline MEG

  • Member
  • Posts: 304
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #10 on: February 22, 2015, 04:36:29 pm »
Mike, thanks so much for this most excellent explanation. Best I've ever heard/read...
Geno 1a. IL28B+ with TT polymorphism.
Diagnosed 1993.
Liver Biopsy 1993 --inflammation.
Fibroscan 2014---no fibrosis.
ALT range---60s
AST range---80s.
Platelets: 200K range.
Viral load--2 million range.

Began Harvoni on January 23.
Finished 12 week course on April 19.

May 18---4 week EOT labs:
VL: UNDETECTED.
AST: 23
ALT: 22...........These have not been this low throughout treatment and since my 20s.

12 weeks EOT on July 15---Undetected.

Offline Roger

  • Member
  • Posts: 171
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #11 on: February 22, 2015, 07:04:35 pm »
Thanks Mike & duwbdawg,

Regarding spreading the SRV blood around...  If we achieve SRV 12 or 24, could our blood infect another via cut to cut, blood transfer during sex, blood squirting into someones eyes, etc? 

Until Friday, I was under the impression that I could become a blood brother (lol) with someone and they would not become infected. Would they become infected?

If the answer is yes, "eventually" would it be safe, after the virus dies out completely to share blood?

I have been very careful not to even shake hands with people if I have a cut on my hands.  During my initial introduction seminar at my docs office they said infected people should not EVER share razors, dental floss (a bit gross) or toothbrushes...
Genotype 1a
2006 - Dx
2009 Biopsy      - Stage 2
2013 FibroScan - Stage 2
2014 FibroSure - Stage 3

Started Harvoni 11.21.2014 Viral Load - 313,593
12.26.2014 - UND (at 5 weeks)
At 8 Weeks - UND
EOT 02/12/15 - UND
12 Week EOT Blood Work - UND

Offline duwbdawg

  • Member
  • Posts: 6
  • "It's Your Health, Make Time!"
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #12 on: February 22, 2015, 10:22:25 pm »
Mike has a better grasp of the details. The math shows that out of 150 million people infected world wide, maybe 1500 have a relapse after SVR24. Those are awesome statistics, but like Mike says, only one virus needs to be transferred. Hopefully though, if it is transferred, a healthy immune response will nab it at the first level without infection.

If you notice the quantity of blood they test when you get your blood drawn, notice it isn't your entire blood supply, only a small sample. Thus your detectable virus load in your entire body is estimated by a vial.

As such, there isn't an answer to your question. "No" or "Yes" would be speculation at best. Feel confident knowing that you have only a 1 in 100,000 chance to relapse, but I will live the rest of my life like I still remain a carrier or until the dust settles on the research of "cure". Besides, don't share needles, razors, toothbrushes anytime infected or not. Just a bad practice.   
Infected: 1985
DX: 1998
HepC 1a
8 weeks Harvoni 2/23/2015
"Gesundheit!"

Offline Mike

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 999
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #13 on: February 23, 2015, 08:58:14 am »
Never share blood - unless there is a medical reason and it is supervised by medical professionals. Blood sharing is what got us to this point (needing tx for HCV).

Best wishes, Mike
Genotype 1a
Treated 2001 with PEG and RIBV
Treated in 2014 SOL+PEG+RIBV
Cured July 2014

Offline Roger

  • Member
  • Posts: 171
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #14 on: February 23, 2015, 01:56:54 pm »
Got it. Thanks.

That said, many people experience mixing blood during sex, as either party or both at the same time can emit blood, under a variety of circumstances.  This worries me.
Genotype 1a
2006 - Dx
2009 Biopsy      - Stage 2
2013 FibroScan - Stage 2
2014 FibroSure - Stage 3

Started Harvoni 11.21.2014 Viral Load - 313,593
12.26.2014 - UND (at 5 weeks)
At 8 Weeks - UND
EOT 02/12/15 - UND
12 Week EOT Blood Work - UND

Offline anniemybaby

  • Member
  • Posts: 133
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #15 on: February 23, 2015, 03:31:55 pm »
This thread has me extremely confused why does my Dr tell me harvoni can cure me when in actuality I will always carry this :-[
Annie

Offline Trenz

  • Member
  • Posts: 27
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #16 on: February 23, 2015, 05:33:42 pm »
9 months ago I was undetectable after 12 wks of Sovaldi/Riba/Peg treatment. 6 months ago I had a viral load of just over a million.  So undetectable doesn't mean cured.  The Dragon is powerful, cunning and despicable.
 
I'm having another go at him.  I'm on day 5 of 24 wks of Havoni/Riba. Fatigue and depression are settling in .  I stopped taking anti depressants when I had a bout of Hepatic Encephalopathy about 4 months ago. I am considering going back on them.   

Offline Mike

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 999
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #17 on: February 23, 2015, 06:59:39 pm »
Hi anniemybaby,

Your doctor is correct - Harvoni can cure you by eradicating the virus in your body.

HCV is an RNA virus and must replicate to remain alive and active. Once the virus is eradicated in your system there is nothing left to reproduce and the infection is cleared. This means cured.

Antibodies are produce by your body to combat an infection. Specifically:

'An antibody (AB), also known as an immunoglobulin (Ig), is a large Y-shape protein produced by plasma cells that is used by the immune system to identify and neutralize foreign objects such as bacteria and viruses."

As previously noted:

"Once an individual is exposed to the HVC virus, the body produces antibodies to fight the initial infection. These antibodies will always be present."

Antibodies are not viruses and a person can have HCV antibodies and never develop a chronic HCV infection.

For example, if you were ever immunized against the measles, mumps, rubella, tetanus, Hep-A or Hep-B, the antibodies will be present in your system.  Antibodies, which are naturally produced by your immune system, protect against  infection, which is why we get childhood vaccination and booster shots. Testing for these antibodies (measles and so on) ensure us that we are still protected against these childhood diseases.

Because HCV is a particularly pernicious virus, most people's immune systems  (antibodies) cannot fight off the initial infection and need treatment to accomplish this. This is why it has been difficult to develop an HCV vaccination (our bodies natural defenses simply are not strong enough to defeat the initial exposure).

Unfortunately, some people will relapse and fail to achieve an SVR12 or SVR24 (note a 90% success rate does not mean 100%). However, after an SVR24 is confirmed (no detectable virus 6 months after treatment has ended), the incidence of the virus reemerging after an SVR24 is extremely rare and most likely due to reinfection or faulty testing at the SVR24 mark.

Simply put, if an individual attains an SVR24, with the greatest degree of medical certainty, that person is cured and the chance of relapse after that marker is statistically insignificant.  :)

Best wishes, Mike



Genotype 1a
Treated 2001 with PEG and RIBV
Treated in 2014 SOL+PEG+RIBV
Cured July 2014

Offline lporterrn

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,969
  • LucindaPorterRN
    • LucindaPorterRN
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #18 on: February 23, 2015, 07:01:46 pm »
Roger - See if this helps. If we put something in the water that sterilized every human on the planet so that another human being could not be born, technically, we would not be killing any human beings. However, we would sure be putting an end to humanity. That is what Harvoni does. It puts an end to hep C. Viruses cannot thrive unless they replicate. When they die off, you are cured.
Lucinda Porter, RN
1988 Contracted HCV
1997 Interferon nonresponder
2003 PEG + ribavirin responder-relapser
2013 Cured (Harvoni + ribavirin clinical trial)
https://www.hepmag.com/blogger/lucindakporter

Offline Mike

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 999
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #19 on: February 23, 2015, 07:03:40 pm »
I like that metaphor, Lucinda! :)

Mike
Genotype 1a
Treated 2001 with PEG and RIBV
Treated in 2014 SOL+PEG+RIBV
Cured July 2014

Offline anniemybaby

  • Member
  • Posts: 133
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #20 on: February 23, 2015, 07:40:56 pm »
Thanks mike I think I finally understand this thread thanks so much for putting this into perspective my goal is thanks again ) to b cured as well as everyone's :)
Annie

Offline Karen1124

  • Member
  • Posts: 76
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #21 on: February 23, 2015, 09:10:17 pm »
Hello Everyone! Today is day 19 on Harvoni, I haven't posted since my 8th day, my only side effect has been cold hands and feet that last for about 20 minutes five or six times a day.I have been reading everyone's posts and congratulations to everyone who's UD, and to all that have been approved. and to Mike and Lucinda who did a excellent job of explaining How Harvoni works to stop the virus from replicating its self! I have learn a lot on the forum very glad your all here! Having hep C force you to become educated in medicine!! Lol Thank you !! And God Bless you all!!
Geno 1a
VL 2 million
DX May 1 2014
Bio June 5 2014
moderate fibrosis
Start Harvoni 2/5/2015
EOT 4/1/2015
 7/22/2014 alt 186 12/30  64  3/5/15  39
7/22/14  ast 114    12/30.  41  3/5/15  27
Don't know how I got hep C in my 20s I did snort coke a few times.
3/5/15 undetected
4/2/15 less than 15 VL ferrin levels normal
4/9/15 undetected!!
6/24/15 relapse VL 424,000
7/26/16 Started treatment today Harvoni and Ribavirin 24 weeks

Offline Roger

  • Member
  • Posts: 171
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #22 on: February 24, 2015, 09:56:04 pm »
Mike,
Thanks for the explanation. Why is it that we can never give blood or donate organs, if after 24 weeks all we have left are antibodies... like people have that had measles, etc?
Genotype 1a
2006 - Dx
2009 Biopsy      - Stage 2
2013 FibroScan - Stage 2
2014 FibroSure - Stage 3

Started Harvoni 11.21.2014 Viral Load - 313,593
12.26.2014 - UND (at 5 weeks)
At 8 Weeks - UND
EOT 02/12/15 - UND
12 Week EOT Blood Work - UND

Offline motor

  • Member
  • Posts: 58
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #23 on: February 24, 2015, 11:45:38 pm »
Thanks to all posters, their insights are helpful.  I wish all posters would take the time to use the profile tab at top and create their signature.  This gives their comments more gravitas
Age 66male GT 1a/CT  Dx 5/19/14
Likely infected early 70's
VL 3.7mil FibroScan F2 FSure F2
ALT 84(12-78) AST 56(3-36) High
Tx naive
8wks Harvoni start 3/3/15 VA
4wks ALT 25(12-78) AST 22(3-36) Normal 
        VL  <15  NOT DETECTED
8wks ALT 24 AST 19 
EOT  VL   <15  NOT DETECTED
SVR12 VL <15  NOT DETECTED

Offline kate0b1

  • Member
  • Posts: 293
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #24 on: February 25, 2015, 06:42:42 am »
as always, thanks mike and lucinda. Great posts, so helpful.

kate

Offline MrMcSwifty

  • Member
  • Posts: 14
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #25 on: February 25, 2015, 02:18:58 pm »
Mike,
Thanks for the explanation. Why is it that we can never give blood or donate organs, if after 24 weeks all we have left are antibodies... like people have that had measles, etc?

Roger, you might find it interesting to know that, according to some sources, HCV infection does not necessarily preclude you from being an organ donor:

http://hepatitis.about.com/od/questions/f/OrganDonor.htm

It's still a no go on the blood donation though.

Offline Roger

  • Member
  • Posts: 171
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #26 on: February 25, 2015, 02:22:30 pm »
That's confusing to me... if the virus has burned itself out, and can not replicate - isn't it dead? (or could it come back, once again?)

If I understand things correctly, and it leaves behind antibodies only (like measles does) then why not donate blood?
Genotype 1a
2006 - Dx
2009 Biopsy      - Stage 2
2013 FibroScan - Stage 2
2014 FibroSure - Stage 3

Started Harvoni 11.21.2014 Viral Load - 313,593
12.26.2014 - UND (at 5 weeks)
At 8 Weeks - UND
EOT 02/12/15 - UND
12 Week EOT Blood Work - UND

Offline dragonslayer

  • Member
  • Posts: 873
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #27 on: February 25, 2015, 02:42:57 pm »
That's confusing to me... if the virus has burned itself out, and can not replicate - isn't it dead? (or could it come back, once again?)

If I understand things correctly, and it leaves behind antibodies only (like measles does) then why not donate blood?

Yea, Im getting a very mixed message out of all of this... The main thing Im interested in is, if you clear the virus and are deemed SVR, then how is it you are still an infections risk to those around you?  I still havent seen a really straight answer on this.
Paul

DX 2008
Started Harvoni 11/26/14 for 8 wks
Completed 8 wks Harvoni 01/20/15
EOT RNA Quant result:  Detected 29
7.5 wk post tx: Detected < LLOQ(12)
11 wk post tx: UNDETECTED SVR12
24 wk post tx: UNDETECTED SVR24; AST 26; ALT 22; ALP 73
48 wk post tx: UNDETECTED SVR48; AST 18; ALT 18; ALP 70
GT 1a
vl 2.4mil
2008 bpx: Stage&Grade 0
2013 bpx: Stage&Grade: 0-1
IL28B: TT
likely infected early '70s

Offline Lynn K

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 4,539
  • Get tested, get treated, get cured, fight Hep c!
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #28 on: February 25, 2015, 03:05:04 pm »
In my understanding

If UND for a period of time depending on who you ask 12 or 24 weeks post treatment SVR you are considered cured of hep c you are not considered contageous I suppose you could share tooth brushes if so inclined but that is not a good practice I am sure you would agree.

The blood banks mission is to deliver safe blood so they are deciding on the side of caution not to allow people who test positive for HCV antibodies to donate.

There have been isolated incidence of late relapsers so they could be takng a small risk by allowing us to donate. Why take the risk to public health when it is not necessary.

I also have heard you can donate an organ even if you have hep c. If there is a patient with hep c and cirrhosis who needs a liver and the donated liver is in good shape but has hep c there have been transplants done under those types of circumstances.

Roger

The virus hasn't burned itself out per say. As it was said above just like any population if it is prevented from reproducing the population dies off naturally. If every human in the world could no longer have children the human race would end with the last elderly humans death.

The only reason the hep c could come back is because testing is not absolutely perfect for detecting the absence of the virus which is why the result is "not detected" and is not eradicated or absent or some other term just that as best the test can tell it cannot detect the virus. This is why we have to wait 12 or 24 weeks to make sure there were no surviving virus below the level of detectability that were able to repopulate in our bodies.
Genotype 1a
1978 contracted, 1990 Dx
1995 Intron A failed
2001 Interferon Riba null response
2003 Pegintron Riba trial med null response
2008 F4 Cirrhosis Bx
2014 12 week Sov/Oly relapse
10/14 fibroscan 27 PLT 96
2014 24 weeks Harvoni 15 weeks Riba
5/4/15 EOT not detected, ALT 21, AST 20
4 week post not detected, ALT 26, AST 28
12 week post NOT DETECTED (07/27/15)
ALT 29, AST 27 PLT 92
24 week post NOT DETECTED! (10/19/15)
44 weeks (3/11/16)  fibroscan 33, PLT 111, HCV NOT DETECTED!
I AM FREE!

Offline lporterrn

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,969
  • LucindaPorterRN
    • LucindaPorterRN
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #29 on: February 28, 2015, 10:43:21 pm »
Roger - you asked,
Quote
If I understand things correctly, and it leaves behind antibodies only (like measles does) then why not donate blood?

It is largely because the blood banking system can't afford to do the viral load testing - it is cheap to do the antibody test. If it is antibody+, they stop there.
Lucinda Porter, RN
1988 Contracted HCV
1997 Interferon nonresponder
2003 PEG + ribavirin responder-relapser
2013 Cured (Harvoni + ribavirin clinical trial)
https://www.hepmag.com/blogger/lucindakporter

Offline Lynn K

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 4,539
  • Get tested, get treated, get cured, fight Hep c!
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #30 on: February 28, 2015, 10:55:44 pm »
Thanks Lucinda
Genotype 1a
1978 contracted, 1990 Dx
1995 Intron A failed
2001 Interferon Riba null response
2003 Pegintron Riba trial med null response
2008 F4 Cirrhosis Bx
2014 12 week Sov/Oly relapse
10/14 fibroscan 27 PLT 96
2014 24 weeks Harvoni 15 weeks Riba
5/4/15 EOT not detected, ALT 21, AST 20
4 week post not detected, ALT 26, AST 28
12 week post NOT DETECTED (07/27/15)
ALT 29, AST 27 PLT 92
24 week post NOT DETECTED! (10/19/15)
44 weeks (3/11/16)  fibroscan 33, PLT 111, HCV NOT DETECTED!
I AM FREE!

Offline Roger

  • Member
  • Posts: 171
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #31 on: March 01, 2015, 01:18:59 pm »
Lucinda, Thanks for the explanation. The HCV must have a 'short' life span, inasmuch as within 8 - 12 weeks (in most cases) it shows up UND with Harvoni Tx.  Do I have that correct?.. that it is constantly replication, eating a little liver, and then dying - leaving the liver for the young ones - then they have a little liver, replicate and die, etc?
Genotype 1a
2006 - Dx
2009 Biopsy      - Stage 2
2013 FibroScan - Stage 2
2014 FibroSure - Stage 3

Started Harvoni 11.21.2014 Viral Load - 313,593
12.26.2014 - UND (at 5 weeks)
At 8 Weeks - UND
EOT 02/12/15 - UND
12 Week EOT Blood Work - UND

Offline lporterrn

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,969
  • LucindaPorterRN
    • LucindaPorterRN
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #32 on: March 01, 2015, 02:53:02 pm »
Roger, you are correct. Here is an astounding tidbit HCV replicates a trillion times a day. So basically, the issue isn't that we can prevent HCV from replicating, so much as preventing ALL of them from replicating.
Lucinda Porter, RN
1988 Contracted HCV
1997 Interferon nonresponder
2003 PEG + ribavirin responder-relapser
2013 Cured (Harvoni + ribavirin clinical trial)
https://www.hepmag.com/blogger/lucindakporter

Offline mario555

  • Member
  • Posts: 226
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #33 on: March 02, 2015, 01:30:56 pm »
Many people worry and wonder why they should have antibodies if all the viruses are dead. Antibodies are made by us not by the virus. We make antibodies of different types to combat different diseases.  Those antibodies stay with us for a lifetime (most of them). Unfortunately for us, when we were infected by Hep C, our bodies did not produce enough antibodies to fight the invaders and we became 'chronic'. We have Hep C antibodies but they lack the potency required to kill all Hep C viruses. We are chronically stuck with them....
In order to kill the viruses, something has to be done and it has to be safe enough not to kill us in the process... Harvoni is a marvel because it can affect the Hep C viruses in a way that prevents them from multiplying. In doing so, it cannot affect other cells in our bodies or else all regenerative processes would stop. Harvoni affects the Hep C virus at a specific place and it only does that. It doesn't need to use your body to do its job, it does it independently.  I would bet if you put Harvoni and Hep C viruses in a petri-dish, the harvoni would attack the viruses right in the dish, no human body required.
Now, patients that have a high viral load and maybe cirrhosis, have so many dead areas in their livers and so many crooks and crannies that a longer treatment is required to make sure that a little bugger virus who hid for a while will be attacked by Harvoni when it does come out (and they all have to come out sooner or later).
Patients on 24 weeks do not clear the virus at 100% but they are really close! Some of the relapse might be explained by reinfection, by not following the protocol properly, by eating, drinking or doing something that should not have been done but the testing and in-depth studies are not there yet.  This is why I do not take supplements, try new diets, I have stopped eating grapefruits, lemons, etc... I just want to make sure I don't do anything out of the ordinary...
I hope this helped....
60 years old. Likely infected 1975. Geno 1a
F4  8 millions VL,  AST 140  ALT 140
Generally in good health except problems are creeping up rapidly!
2 failed attempts Inf 2000 and Inf-riba 2010
Harvoni 24 weeks
Start 11/13/2014   EOT 4/27/2015
VL2 - UND
VL4 - UND (may 25)
VL12 - UND
VK24 -  UND
Hopefully cured forever!

Offline Roger

  • Member
  • Posts: 171
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #34 on: March 02, 2015, 01:53:31 pm »
Mario, Good explanation. Thanks.
Strange thing - my doc never told me what not to do when taking Harvoni...
I 'think' I did things correctly, although I did continue to take my supplements daily.

Genotype 1a
2006 - Dx
2009 Biopsy      - Stage 2
2013 FibroScan - Stage 2
2014 FibroSure - Stage 3

Started Harvoni 11.21.2014 Viral Load - 313,593
12.26.2014 - UND (at 5 weeks)
At 8 Weeks - UND
EOT 02/12/15 - UND
12 Week EOT Blood Work - UND

Offline dragonslayer

  • Member
  • Posts: 873
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #35 on: March 02, 2015, 02:50:43 pm »
Mario, Good explanation. Thanks.
Strange thing - my doc never told me what not to do when taking Harvoni...
I 'think' I did things correctly, although I did continue to take my supplements daily.

Roger, I too took some supplements while on treatment. .I pretty much gave up the selenium and milk thistle, but continued the multi vitamin, but took it about 4 hrs after dosing with Harvoni.

For me, insomnia, next to HCV, has been a major issue... So I continued to take my bedtime supplements, rotating the following 3:  Ambien, diphenhydramine (benadryl), and 5-HTP which I found assists somewhat with sleep.. I quit taking valerian about a week in.  These bedtime aids were taken about 9 hrs prior to dosing with Harvoni.  I keep wondering why I wasnt UND at EOT, and if these had anything to do with it. I took them because A) going sleepless doesnt seem like the best way to keep up the immune system which obviously is required to clear the virus, and B) There was a 9 hr spacing between these supplements and Harvoni dosing.. The only other thing I took was synthroid, about 2-3 hrs before Harvoni, for hypothyroid condition. .None of these were contraindicated, although I do realize many of them have not been clinically tested for interactions.

Im wondering, Roger, which supplements you were taking while on Harvoni?
Paul

DX 2008
Started Harvoni 11/26/14 for 8 wks
Completed 8 wks Harvoni 01/20/15
EOT RNA Quant result:  Detected 29
7.5 wk post tx: Detected < LLOQ(12)
11 wk post tx: UNDETECTED SVR12
24 wk post tx: UNDETECTED SVR24; AST 26; ALT 22; ALP 73
48 wk post tx: UNDETECTED SVR48; AST 18; ALT 18; ALP 70
GT 1a
vl 2.4mil
2008 bpx: Stage&Grade 0
2013 bpx: Stage&Grade: 0-1
IL28B: TT
likely infected early '70s

Offline Karen1124

  • Member
  • Posts: 76
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #36 on: March 02, 2015, 02:53:29 pm »
Hi Mario555,
Why no lemons or grapefruit? Can you explain or share a link?
Karen......Life is Good!!
Geno 1a
VL 2 million
DX May 1 2014
Bio June 5 2014
moderate fibrosis
Start Harvoni 2/5/2015
EOT 4/1/2015
 7/22/2014 alt 186 12/30  64  3/5/15  39
7/22/14  ast 114    12/30.  41  3/5/15  27
Don't know how I got hep C in my 20s I did snort coke a few times.
3/5/15 undetected
4/2/15 less than 15 VL ferrin levels normal
4/9/15 undetected!!
6/24/15 relapse VL 424,000
7/26/16 Started treatment today Harvoni and Ribavirin 24 weeks

Offline Lynn K

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 4,539
  • Get tested, get treated, get cured, fight Hep c!
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #37 on: March 02, 2015, 03:30:33 pm »
I did Sovaldi and Olysio last year which at the time was only 12 weeks but later changed to 24 weeks for patients with cirrhosis this change was long after I finished treatment. I was undetectable at week 4 on treatment and at week 12 EOT but when I was tested at 12 weeks post in September I was found to have relapsed.

Trust me when I tell you that being a null responder to 3 six month treatments with interferon based treatment and having cirrhosis I followed the treatment protocol to the letter and missed no doses. I guess I am just one of the lucky ones with the toughest bugs in town GT 1a of course and never tested but willing to bet I have all the negative treatment indicators based on my past results.

I have been on Harvoni for week 15 of 24 and added Ribavirin 1000 mg at week 9 so throwing the kitchen sink at the bugs. I am hoping this treatment will be my last as I don't know if I have enough time left on this 7 years of cirrhosis liver to wait for the next best treatment and really if this doesn't work would anything coming soon be different enough to have a better outcome?
Genotype 1a
1978 contracted, 1990 Dx
1995 Intron A failed
2001 Interferon Riba null response
2003 Pegintron Riba trial med null response
2008 F4 Cirrhosis Bx
2014 12 week Sov/Oly relapse
10/14 fibroscan 27 PLT 96
2014 24 weeks Harvoni 15 weeks Riba
5/4/15 EOT not detected, ALT 21, AST 20
4 week post not detected, ALT 26, AST 28
12 week post NOT DETECTED (07/27/15)
ALT 29, AST 27 PLT 92
24 week post NOT DETECTED! (10/19/15)
44 weeks (3/11/16)  fibroscan 33, PLT 111, HCV NOT DETECTED!
I AM FREE!

Offline motor

  • Member
  • Posts: 58
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #38 on: March 02, 2015, 04:30:39 pm »
Lynn, do you know what your IL28B gene status is?
Age 66male GT 1a/CT  Dx 5/19/14
Likely infected early 70's
VL 3.7mil FibroScan F2 FSure F2
ALT 84(12-78) AST 56(3-36) High
Tx naive
8wks Harvoni start 3/3/15 VA
4wks ALT 25(12-78) AST 22(3-36) Normal 
        VL  <15  NOT DETECTED
8wks ALT 24 AST 19 
EOT  VL   <15  NOT DETECTED
SVR12 VL <15  NOT DETECTED

Offline mario555

  • Member
  • Posts: 226
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #39 on: March 02, 2015, 04:38:07 pm »
Karen1124. Sorry if I expressed myself a bit recklessly, I was just mentioning why in my 'overly anxious' mind what likely effects might happen ( I'm an accountant so I'm almost wearing a belt and suspenders...). I have read repeatedly that grapefruits are not supposed to be ingested while taking many types of pills. From there 'in my mind' I thought if a citrus could do that what about other sour citrus (ses?). I am in my 16th week out of 24 and I've changed. I live for that time where I take the pill. I fret over everything and I try to have the closest to a standard north American meal all the time so as to resemble the trial subjects. Ha! Ha!
I know many people take supplement and are adamant they will benefit out of them. I have absolutely nothing against that. I just don't take any and much less while on treatment by my choice.
60 years old. Likely infected 1975. Geno 1a
F4  8 millions VL,  AST 140  ALT 140
Generally in good health except problems are creeping up rapidly!
2 failed attempts Inf 2000 and Inf-riba 2010
Harvoni 24 weeks
Start 11/13/2014   EOT 4/27/2015
VL2 - UND
VL4 - UND (may 25)
VL12 - UND
VK24 -  UND
Hopefully cured forever!

Offline Karen1124

  • Member
  • Posts: 76
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #40 on: March 02, 2015, 05:07:09 pm »
Mario555, Thank you for the response. I had not read about that in
Any of info on Harvoni and my doctor didn't say anything about grapefruit. You are not the first person that has mentioned it on the forum. I used to take all kinds of supplements but my doctor said no supplements! A multivitamin and healthy diet with only 20 grams of sugar per day. Daily exercise! I am doing exactly what he said to
Do!! Thanks for the reply and best of luck with your treatment!  Karen.....Life is Good!
Geno 1a
VL 2 million
DX May 1 2014
Bio June 5 2014
moderate fibrosis
Start Harvoni 2/5/2015
EOT 4/1/2015
 7/22/2014 alt 186 12/30  64  3/5/15  39
7/22/14  ast 114    12/30.  41  3/5/15  27
Don't know how I got hep C in my 20s I did snort coke a few times.
3/5/15 undetected
4/2/15 less than 15 VL ferrin levels normal
4/9/15 undetected!!
6/24/15 relapse VL 424,000
7/26/16 Started treatment today Harvoni and Ribavirin 24 weeks

Offline Roger

  • Member
  • Posts: 171
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #41 on: March 02, 2015, 09:21:52 pm »
Paul, I always took my Harvoni in the morning (10am - 12pm), and my supplements at night, so hopefully that was ok.

I take fish oil, multi, D3, calcium, turmeric, B12, baby aspirin & C.  Today I am adding CoQ10 to my evening pills.  No drugs (knock on wood), just vitamins!

It's kind of strange with my hepatologist not communicating one word with me during the Tx... you'd think he'd want to monitor things.  A nurse ordered a 4 week, 12 week & 12 week EOT blood test, but that was about it! 
Genotype 1a
2006 - Dx
2009 Biopsy      - Stage 2
2013 FibroScan - Stage 2
2014 FibroSure - Stage 3

Started Harvoni 11.21.2014 Viral Load - 313,593
12.26.2014 - UND (at 5 weeks)
At 8 Weeks - UND
EOT 02/12/15 - UND
12 Week EOT Blood Work - UND

Offline Lynn K

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 4,539
  • Get tested, get treated, get cured, fight Hep c!
Re: Gilead Pharmacy Told me that Harvoni Does Not "Kill" the Virus...
« Reply #42 on: March 02, 2015, 09:44:04 pm »
Motor

No I do not. I have never tested or for IL28B allele or my Q80K polymorphism as there would be no point.

But willing to guess they are all the unfavorable types based on my treatment history. When I treated with Interferon Riba not only did my viral load not decline my viral load actually increased on treatment. Like I said tough bugs.

I need to treat no matter what and the decisions about my treatment would be unchanged by the results 
« Last Edit: March 02, 2015, 09:46:22 pm by Lynn K »
Genotype 1a
1978 contracted, 1990 Dx
1995 Intron A failed
2001 Interferon Riba null response
2003 Pegintron Riba trial med null response
2008 F4 Cirrhosis Bx
2014 12 week Sov/Oly relapse
10/14 fibroscan 27 PLT 96
2014 24 weeks Harvoni 15 weeks Riba
5/4/15 EOT not detected, ALT 21, AST 20
4 week post not detected, ALT 26, AST 28
12 week post NOT DETECTED (07/27/15)
ALT 29, AST 27 PLT 92
24 week post NOT DETECTED! (10/19/15)
44 weeks (3/11/16)  fibroscan 33, PLT 111, HCV NOT DETECTED!
I AM FREE!

 


© 2022 Smart + Strong. All Rights Reserved.   terms of use and your privacy
Smart + Strong® is a registered trademark of CDM Publishing, LLC.