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Author Topic: Antibody Positive but RNA Negative with all symptoms and elevated ALT  (Read 8999 times)

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Offline CrazyHepC

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  • Posts: 6
This is my first message on this board, but I need some help.  I have had a lot of problems over the past few years and this past year I ended up in the hospital three time, once for a sore on my bum that turned into infection, later after taking the antibiotics my right flank started hurting, abdominal pain, constipation and chest pain.  ended up having a full series of test including heart cath and ended up with mild edema in legs and chest but very little clogging in my arteries.  I started taking statin's and diuretic and two days later I had my jaw almost lock and my left arm and face become numb.  Went back in and ALT was at 71 from 81 and the ran a hep panel and didn't even know I tested positive until I was out and had a follow up with a GI doctor.  GI doctor ran latest TAM <15 and I was undetected.  ANA was positive and iron was elevated.  I have constant pain in my feet, hands arms shoulders and a crazy headache that won't go away for months now.  Fibro test showed a 46  F1-F2.  He told me to come back in three months.  I can't live with that.  I'm starting to wonder about Cryoglobulinemia since I have many of the symptoms even had a period of 6 months my testicles hurt so bad and crazy rash in my groin the dermatologist marked down as yeast.  LOL,  nothing helped it.  Still have some pain in testicles today when lying on side at night.  I'm at a loss, plan to have another viral load test done, but what are the chances of having a high ALT and no viral load?  Even though antibody positive.  I'm concerned since I have used a glucose meter of a family member in the past and scared as crap, since I don't know were HCV came from in the first place, no drugs, no transfusions, few surgeries, no tattoo's, piercings, etc..  Please help   

Offline CrazyHepC

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Re: Antibody Positive but RNA Negative with all symptoms and elevated ALT
« Reply #1 on: October 08, 2015, 12:09:30 pm »
Anyone have any advice?  I'm scared and don't know what to do at this point.  Can anything cause false VL test?  Should stop worrying?  I'm concerned with the damage already to my liver and the way I feel everyday.  Met with doctor this week and he is at a loss.  I did give blood in 2009, but nothing came up.  concerned with liver fibroscore, positive antibody and negative VL.  Any guidance would be greatly helpful.  It takes months to see doctors anymore. 

Offline KimInTheForest

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Re: Antibody Positive but RNA Negative with all symptoms and elevated ALT
« Reply #2 on: October 08, 2015, 12:32:38 pm »
Hi CrazyHepC. I have no medical training. But if I understand your problem correctly, you tested positive for having antibodies to Hep C, but no actual Hep C virus can be detected in your blood. And your ALT is slightly elevated (71-81). And a Fibrosure test showed you to be F1-F2. Is that right?

My first reaction to that would be that you don't have Hepatitis C, but rather that you were at some point in your life exposed to Hepatitis C, developed antibodies to it (which you will now have for life), and then your body cleared the virus on its own. 15-20% of people infected with Hepatitis C do manage to clear the virus on their own before it becomes chronic (i.e., in first 6 months after infection).

Many things can elevate a person's ALT to the range you have listed - illness, exercise, exposure to toxins, drugs, alcohol.

And most people even without Hep C probably have a fibrosis score of F1 just from living life. Fibrosure is not terribly accurate at the low levels of fibrosis. So your F1-F2 result could in fact just be F1.

By all means get complete clarification from your doctor about whether you do or do not currently have Hep C virus in your body. But it seems like you don't. And the other things you mention can be explained by things other than Hep C.

Just my 2 cents. Others here may have different information for you.

good luck! :)
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 dragonslayer

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Re: Antibody Positive but RNA Negative with all symptoms and elevated ALT
« Reply #3 on: October 08, 2015, 03:05:13 pm »
I agree with Kim.. Given the symptoms and the information at hand, her explanation sounds like the most logical.
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 CrazyHepC

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  • Posts: 6
Re: Antibody Positive but RNA Negative with all symptoms and elevated ALT
« Reply #4 on: October 08, 2015, 03:24:01 pm »
I really appreciate the response and support.  I'm having another VL test done this week and we will see.  I was taking valtrex during the time for HSV-1 cold sores when I took my last test and noticed a study showed it dropped HCV VL by about 24% in a study and they are doing another study on this.  Just concerns me due to liver damage, high iron, diarrhea constantly, headaches and now nueropathy like crazy.  It really upset me that the hospital didn't even call with that I tested antibody positive and had to find out weeks later at my GI apt.  Concerned as my wife went with me to my GI apt and we both hit the floor.  After the VL test being undetectable she is not worried and I can't force her to be tested, but I'm about at that point.  I can see why people go crazy going through diagnostics.  LOL.  Thanks Again. 

Offline CrazyHepC

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Re: Antibody Positive but RNA Negative with all symptoms and elevated ALT
« Reply #5 on: October 15, 2015, 08:30:31 am »
Hello and thanks again and thought I would provide an update.  Went back to the doctor and they ran a bunch of testing and found out some interesting item.

They reran my antibody test and as you can see it is a very low positive 1.3.
Test    Low    Normal    High    Reference Range    Units
hep c virus ab       1.3    0.0-0.9    s/co ratio

The also reran HVC RNA by PCR.
 Hepatitis C Quantitation
HCV Not Detected
     The quantitative range of the assay is 15 IU/mL to 100 million IU/mL
     using COBAS(R) TaqMan(R) HCV test, v 2.0. The limit of detection (LOD)
     and lower limit of quantification (LLOQ) for this assay is 15 IU/mL.

Then the interesting part.  They testing me for CMV and EBV, which I know I had EBV before, but turns out it must have re-activated. As it came back positive and active.  Also take a look at the notes in the Labcorp report under the EBV test.  Interesting.
EBV Early Antigen Ab, IgG      >150.0   High
U/mL
   0.0 - 8.9
01
Hepatitis A, Hepatitis C and HIV antibodies may cross-react
with this assay.


I thought this would be interesting for anyone that went through what I did almost thinking about a trip to india, but turns out it is a true false positive.  Worse thing is I can't give blood as I used to a few years back.  Pretty scary that these test cross react this bad and cause not only the mental stress on an individual, but family issues, etc...   Wish everyone the best and thought this would be of great interest to everyone in the same boat of having antibody positive and RNA negative.  You think they would come up with better test.  I can't give blood, get life insurance, nothing currently.  Hope it goes back to a negative in the future. 
Thanks Everyone for your support. 

Offline CrazyHepC

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  • Posts: 6
Re: Antibody Positive but RNA Negative with all symptoms and elevated ALT
« Reply #6 on: October 15, 2015, 07:17:48 pm »
Does this make any sense to anyone.  I've been tested for Hep A, HIV, etc and nothing positive.  I have read articles about low positive titer on elisa can be a false positive, but really don't know what else to do.  They don't offer RIBA test anymore.  Any other test I should take to fully rule out Hep c? 

Offline Lynn K

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  • Member
  • Posts: 4,377
  • Get tested, get treated, get cured, fight Hep c!
Re: Antibody Positive but RNA Negative with all symptoms and elevated ALT
« Reply #7 on: October 15, 2015, 10:31:53 pm »
All I know about is a little about hep c I am not a medical person of any kind just a hep c patient with cirrhosis.

Your test for the hep c virus confirms you do not have hep c so it doesn't matter what the hep c antibody test says

You don't have hep c please ask your doctor for a professional opinion.
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 rainbowray

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  • Posts: 263
  • Gen 1B
Re: Antibody Positive but RNA Negative with all symptoms and elevated ALT
« Reply #8 on: October 16, 2015, 12:09:03 am »
Ask about autoimmune tests. Having neuropothy may be a sign the immune system is attacking the nerves. Having elevated liver enzymes can be fatty liver or even autoimmune. Hows your diet? Are you over weight. I cleared Hep-c, have neuropothy  still from Cryoglobunimia. If you are very sensitive to cold, get rashes when it is cold then cryo may come to play. Ask your doctor , look the symptoms up.
A simple test is for your Rheumatoid Factor count, even though you may not have arthritis, it shows autoimmune issues. I found out cryoglobunimia is a condition very few doctors know about.

Offline CrazyHepC

  • Member
  • Posts: 6
Re: Antibody Positive but RNA Negative with all symptoms and elevated ALT
« Reply #9 on: October 26, 2015, 10:42:37 am »
Well I'm heading back to my PCP and GI doctor this week, wish me luck.  RhDoc ran C3 and C4 serum test and show in normal range which kinda goes against autoimmune, he was a pretty week doc and laughed at me about autoimmune.  I'm going to ask about cryo to both PCP and GI doc.  I keep getting worse, liver is inflamed and can feel it and my entire GI tract hurts when I eat.  It could be Cryo, but how do you know you really cleared the virus if you have Cryo with no Viral Load?  I know it may sound like a dumb question, but I'm just picking up what I can learn.  Yes, it appears not many folks know about Cryo and I have to say, when I have pneumonia in feb this past year they put me on prednisone high dose and my muscle pain went away until I started to taper down.  Does make sense, but then I worried I may have Hep C, just not a detectable VL and my antibody test is not a false positive like my doc thinks.  He thinks this is all EBV, which I read can cause this and it also can cause Cryo.  So this is interesting ready.  Thanks for all your support and will update you once I get back from my appointments this week.

Offline Lynn K

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  • Posts: 4,377
  • Get tested, get treated, get cured, fight Hep c!
Re: Antibody Positive but RNA Negative with all symptoms and elevated ALT
« Reply #10 on: October 26, 2015, 11:55:06 am »
You don't have hep c you have no viral load=no virus=no hep c

Here is an article about cryoglobulinemia it can be related to hep c but you don't have to have hep c to have cryo

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cryoglobulinemia
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!

 


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