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Welcome to the Hep Forums, a round-the-clock discussion area for people who have Fatty Liver Disease, 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.

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Author Topic: Gastroenterologist vs. Hepatologist: What kind of doctor is best for hep C?  (Read 11042 times)

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Offline Hep Editors

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    • Hep Mag
Here's the difference: A gastroenterologist is a specialist in the digestive system, which includes the intestines, liver, pancreas and gallbladder. Meanwhile, hepatology is considered a sub-specialty of gastroenterology, focusing on the liver, as well as the gallbladder, biliary tree and pancreas.

While it may seem preferable to seek out a physician who hones their expertise more narrowly on the liver, experts say there is really no fundamental reason to pick one type over the other. Physicians in both specialties can conduct the necessary tests to determine how far the liver has been damaged as well as your viral genotype and viral load. They can also both prescribe treatment.

However, if you are among the approximate quarter of people with hep C who are coinfected with HIV, you should try to get treatment directly from your infectious disease or HIV specialist, as long as they are familiar with hepatitis C.

The health care community is also pushing to get more general practitioners on the hep C treatment bandwagon. However, at this point, most will end up referring you to a specialist.



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