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Author Topic: After 43 years of living with Hep C I am beginning Harvoni  (Read 9151 times)

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Offline 6stringfla

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  • Posts: 5
After 43 years of living with Hep C I am beginning Harvoni
« on: October 02, 2015, 11:59:56 am »
Today,  I took my 1st Harvoni pill and pray that I am on the way to a Hep C free life. I was treated for 3.5 months back in 1996 when all they had was Interferon. It made me worse so I haven't done anything since. Just had blood work that showed F3 and was approved for Harvoni. I am excited yet cautious in my enthusiasm as I know that sometimes it doesn't work.  But there has never been a time when the odds have been so much in my favor.
GT 1a
VL 2.3
F 3

« Last Edit: October 02, 2015, 01:16:09 pm by 6stringfla »

Offline KimInTheForest

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  • Posts: 1,970
  • Believe in yourself
Re: After 43 years of living with Hep C years I am beginning Harvoni
« Reply #1 on: October 02, 2015, 12:04:36 pm »
Today,  I took my 1st Harvoni pill and pray that I am on the way to a Hep C free life. I was treated for 3.5 months back in 1996 when all they had was Interferon. It made me worse so I haven't done anything since. Just had blood work that showed F3 and was approved for Harvoni. I am excited yet cautious in my enthusiasm as I know that sometimes it doesn't work.  But there has never been a time when the odds have been so much in my favor.
GT 1a
VL 2.3
F 3

Welcome to the forums, 6string - and to the Harvoni journey! You will in all likelihood be cured! Remember to drink plenty of water. It helps lessen any side effects. Some people on Harvoni experience no side effects other than the "Harvoni high", which is actually pretty nice. ;)

cheers,
kim :)

Kim Goldberg (Nanaimo, BC)
1970s: Contracted HCV (genotype 3a)
2015: Cured with Harvoni + ribavirin (12 weeks)
MY STORY: https://pigsquash.wordpress.com/2016/01/28/undetectable-my-hep-c-story/

Offline 6stringfla

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  • Posts: 5
Re: After 43 years of living with Hep C years I am beginning Harvoni
« Reply #2 on: October 02, 2015, 12:16:19 pm »
Thanks so much!  I will be sure to drink plenty of water.  I know I can't have grapefruit but is squeezed lemon in my water OK?

Thanks again!!!

Offline KimInTheForest

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  • Posts: 1,970
  • Believe in yourself
Re: After 43 years of living with Hep C years I am beginning Harvoni
« Reply #3 on: October 02, 2015, 12:22:50 pm »
Thanks so much!  I will be sure to drink plenty of water.  I know I can't have grapefruit but is squeezed lemon in my water OK?
Thanks again!!!

Yes, lots of people here are squeezing lemon into their water to make it more interesting so they can drink a larger volume. Seems to have health benefits too. Also… No antacids like Tums within 4 hours either side of Harvoni.

kim :)
Kim Goldberg (Nanaimo, BC)
1970s: Contracted HCV (genotype 3a)
2015: Cured with Harvoni + ribavirin (12 weeks)
MY STORY: https://pigsquash.wordpress.com/2016/01/28/undetectable-my-hep-c-story/

Offline 6stringfla

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  • Posts: 5
Re: After 43 years of living with Hep C years I am beginning Harvoni
« Reply #4 on: October 02, 2015, 01:07:56 pm »
Thanks Kim!!

Offline Cindy1955

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  • Posts: 30
Re: After 43 years of living with Hep C I am beginning Harvoni
« Reply #5 on: October 02, 2015, 02:19:37 pm »
Good afternoon 6tringfla.
Welcome.  Looks like we have been living with this devil for about the same length of time.  I just started my treatment on Monday (9-28).  I was never willing to try treatment before because the side effects were crazy and I did not think the odds were in my favor for a cure.  You have to wonder after all of these years, what you thought of as normal  is actually not normal and how things will change when the virus is no longer attacking things in your body.  I have always thought of myself as healthy, energetic and motivated.  Wondering how things will be different when I an cured :-*
I have had minimal side effects.  Although I generally drink 64+ oz of water per day, I am finding that is not nearly enough now.  I also seem to be hungrier than normal.  I am not even sure those could be considered side effects just differences.
Hope your journey is a good one and I am glad we found this forum, it has been great to communicate with others who will know what we are dealing with.
Cindy
F/60
Diagnosed 1992 with non A-non B
Genotype 1A
Asymptomatic
Probably contracted blood transfusion 1972
Fibrosis score .54
Fibrosis Stage F2
Treatment naive
Harvoni started 9/28/2015
Begin: AST 55 ALT 66 VL 6,037,770
4 Week Lab: AST 26 ALT 28 VL-UND
8 Week Lab: AST 17 ALT 18 VL-UND

Offline 6stringfla

  • Member
  • Posts: 5
Re: After 43 years of living with Hep C I am beginning Harvoni
« Reply #6 on: October 02, 2015, 02:48:26 pm »
Thanks for your warm welcome,  Cindy. It is comforting to make this journey with others as I have lived alone so long with this disease.

 I read in a forum somewhere (not sure if it was this one) that after a week and a half,  the person felt more energetic and alive. I hope I get my energy back from being cured and not find out that my apparent lack of it is just because I'm 61. But whatever He has in store for me I will try to accept with a grateful heart.  I pray you, too,  are healed and enjoy every day of the rest of your life, as each day is a gift. May we look past the aches,  pains and discomforts of the days that we might see the gift in each one! The dragon has been defeated!!

Kevin
6stringfla

Offline MaryC

  • Member
  • Posts: 117
  • Life is not a sprint; it's a marathon.
Re: After 43 years of living with Hep C years I am beginning Harvoni
« Reply #7 on: October 02, 2015, 05:18:28 pm »
Thanks so much!  I will be sure to drink plenty of water.  I know I can't have grapefruit but is squeezed lemon in my water OK?

Thanks again!!!
Welcome 6stringfla!  I'm guessing you live in the Sunshine State.  Best wishes on your Harvoni recovery journey. I have a question re: the interaction with grapefruit.  I'm on Sovaldi (one of the drugs in Harvoni) and Daklinza. I wasn't advised to avoid grapefruit (love it!). I plan to check with my specialty pharmacist, but wondered if there were specific warnings you were given re:  interactions?  I take calcium (though reconsidering this with the new findings on this) + Vit D and the pharmacist told me no interactions or special instructions with this.  So maybe some of interactions with Harvoni are not a problem with Sovaldi alone.
GT 3a
Dx'd 4/15 not known when contracted
Labs 7/15:
-VL 537,000
-AST 32
-ALT 41
-Fibrosis score 0.46 (F1-F2)
Started tx 9/17/2015 with Daklinza + Sovaldi
6/6/16: 24 week EOT SVR!  Cured!

Offline 6stringfla

  • Member
  • Posts: 5
Re: After 43 years of living with Hep C I am beginning Harvoni
« Reply #8 on: October 02, 2015, 06:56:40 pm »
I'm sorry,  I don't know. The pharmacist told me that grapefruit and grapefruit juice actually intensify the Harvoni and thus its side effects. Also I was told not to take Calcium,  Tums nor antacids within 4 hours of taking Harvoni because the Harvoni needs an acidic environment to be effective. I'm not sure which chemical these warnings interact with. Please call your pharmacist and may your journey be sweet and successful!! The dragon has been defeated!!

Kevin

Offline Philadelphia

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  • Member
  • Posts: 1,157
  • It only looks like I know what I'm doing
Re: After 43 years of living with Hep C I am beginning Harvoni
« Reply #9 on: October 02, 2015, 07:41:53 pm »
All the best for your treatment Kevin and Cindy. You're right you know, the odds ARE in your favour. They aren't definite but they've never been better.

I've heard the grapefruit/antacid info, but can't add any more than that, sorry. Don't like grapefruit, don't take antacids, so just glossed over all of it. :)

« Last Edit: October 02, 2015, 07:59:36 pm by Philadelphia »
CURED SVR24  Class of 2015
Wk 12 post EOT 30.11.15: ALT 14 AST 22 GGT 22 VL UND
Week 19 07.08.15: ALT 17 AST 23 GGT 25
Week 12 18.06.15: ALT 21 AST 23 GGT 28
Week 8 25.05.15: ALT 23 AST 27 GGT 30 VL UND
Week 4 20.04.14: ALT 30 AST 36 VL 40
Treatment start 23.03.15: ALT 137 AST 185 VL 342,600
Cirrhosis Child-Pugh A, Genotype 1a - Viekira Pak + riba 24 weeks
Total failure interferon/ribavirin/boceprovir Mar 2013
https://www.hepmag.com/blogger/grace-campbell

Offline MaryC

  • Member
  • Posts: 117
  • Life is not a sprint; it's a marathon.
Re: After 43 years of living with Hep C I am beginning Harvoni
« Reply #10 on: October 02, 2015, 08:23:32 pm »
Cindy 1955...Exciting to think about what the new 'normal' might feel like isn't it?  Best to you on your journey as well.  I'm guessing from your post that you have experienced an increase in appetite and thirst with Harvoni.  I wonder if increasing fiber in your diet might help?  Sounds like you already drink lots of water.   ;)

6stringfla and Philly...I did find info re: calcium interacting with the ledipasvir in Harvoni.  I guess I will stay away from grapefruit until I talk with the pharmacist.

Mary
GT 3a
Dx'd 4/15 not known when contracted
Labs 7/15:
-VL 537,000
-AST 32
-ALT 41
-Fibrosis score 0.46 (F1-F2)
Started tx 9/17/2015 with Daklinza + Sovaldi
6/6/16: 24 week EOT SVR!  Cured!

Offline onmyway

  • Newbie
  • Posts: 2
Re: After 43 years of living with Hep C I am beginning Harvoni
« Reply #11 on: October 04, 2015, 11:50:35 pm »
I too just started Harvoni. I heard all the horror stories about interfuron. wasn't willing to go down that route. remember saying back then I was waiting for a pill with minimal side effects. I had no idea about 5 years ago when I said that, it would c'ome true so fast. the word "cure" had me skeptical, but it is true from so many testimonies. WOW!

Offline Cindy1955

  • Member
  • Posts: 30
Re: After 43 years of living with Hep C I am beginning Harvoni
« Reply #12 on: October 05, 2015, 11:21:59 am »
Onmyway;
Welcome.  I just finished week 1...YEA.  It has been a good week.  I have been able to continue my normal exercise routine and have felt good except Saturday evening but I am chalking that up to the fact that I decided to cut out caffeine completely so I think it was the caffeine withdrawal headache more than anything.  I still drink TONS of water because I am really thirsty and seem hungrier than normal but that is no big deal.  I am trying to be sure that I don't do anything that may react negatively with the medication.  Not even taking my daily vitamins, I am sure I can do without them for a few months. Only 11 more weeks to go...what an awesome Christmas gift.
I hope your journey is a good one and an anxious to hear from those who are on the same track that we are.

Cindy
F/60
Diagnosed 1992 with non A-non B
Genotype 1A
Asymptomatic
Probably contracted blood transfusion 1972
Fibrosis score .54
Fibrosis Stage F2
Treatment naive
Harvoni started 9/28/2015
Begin: AST 55 ALT 66 VL 6,037,770
4 Week Lab: AST 26 ALT 28 VL-UND
8 Week Lab: AST 17 ALT 18 VL-UND

Offline byebyeC

  • Member
  • Posts: 286
Re: After 43 years of living with Hep C I am beginning Harvoni
« Reply #13 on: October 05, 2015, 11:35:51 am »
Welcome Kevin! And welcome Cindy!

This is a soft place to land whilst you go through this treatment.

Keep on keepin' on!

 ;) Marianne
GT 1a
VL BOT 7 M
Diagnosed 1980
Treatment naive
12 wk Viekira Pak Riba Started 9/7/15
Alaska 
Pre-treatment labs were ast 42 alt 33 vl 7,162,(eyes are light yellow now)
*Latest alt 19 ast 23! Yay! VL <15 detected

Offline Solonghcv

  • Newbie
  • Posts: 1
  • Starting TX soon
Re: After 43 years of living with Hep C I am beginning Harvoni
« Reply #14 on: October 05, 2015, 05:26:14 pm »
Hi..  Your post caught my eye..  as Its almost a mirror image of my situation..  I have been infected since the mid 1970s ... first Dx 1980...   never tx..   although I did get interferon about 11 years ago for skin cancer..   but I quit after just a few weeks...  Now I have been approved  for harvoni . .  I go see the doctor Tuesday  for a class on the medication..?     Med class.?   NOT SURE IF I will start tx Tuesday or not..   
Starting TX soon ..
Infected mid 1970s
Dx 1980
Gen type 1 a
F3 fibrosis

Offline byebyeC

  • Member
  • Posts: 286
Re: After 43 years of living with Hep C I am beginning Harvoni
« Reply #15 on: October 06, 2015, 02:13:46 pm »
Congratulations and welcome Solonghcv!

Very expensive meds, so I guess a class can't hurt(?)... Welcome to the journey! Harvoni will likely be a cure for you! Drink lots and lots of h2o!

God bless :D
GT 1a
VL BOT 7 M
Diagnosed 1980
Treatment naive
12 wk Viekira Pak Riba Started 9/7/15
Alaska 
Pre-treatment labs were ast 42 alt 33 vl 7,162,(eyes are light yellow now)
*Latest alt 19 ast 23! Yay! VL <15 detected

 


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