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Author Topic: Just got Lab results on Fri., newly diagnosed w/ Hep C  (Read 10232 times)

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Offline StillChoppin

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Just got Lab results on Fri., newly diagnosed w/ Hep C
« on: September 26, 2016, 05:03:29 pm »
Hello all,
Recently went in for a routine physical last week just because I turned 42 & did a full blood lab.
Well Doc called Fri morn & said you have Hep C!!!!
Holy crap.. I just about lost it...
Well I did alot of thinking, alot of worrying & alot of reading this weekend.
This is the thing yes I've had unprotected sex, yes I've shared straws doing drugs & yes I have alot of tattoos.
But what really made me think was when I was 25, now 42 I had a full blood for the Fire Dept & it came back as I remember that my liver function was off.?? At 25 I was incredibly healthy so I didn't do anything.
Fast forward 17 yrs & I'm still healthy.
Don't drink, don't smoke, very active & feel great.
My question is why was my liver off at 25 before I had ever really put myself at risk?? Did I have it then.
Was it from my first tattoo in 1991??
I dabbled in drugs for a short time.
But always primarily took care of myself.
I'm just really worried.
I love my family & I give my all everyday to go to work & support them..
I cannot let this creep up on me.
I will do WHATEVER it takes to get myself better.
Any advice, any questions I'm completely open & looking for answers..
I've already started 2000mg of Vit C
200 mg Selenium.
2000iu Vit D
1000mg of L-argenine
It seems like all my Lab results mean nothing after researching it all to death...
My head is just in a fog, I can't concentrate, I'm obsessing over this...
I would really appreciate anything from anyone who has experience...
Many thanks in advance!!!



Offline Lynn K

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  • Get tested, get treated, get cured, fight Hep c!
Re: Just got Lab results on Fri., newly diagnosed w/ Hep C
« Reply #1 on: September 26, 2016, 07:23:55 pm »
Hi and welcome

Ok first of all take a breath and let it out slowly.

I am assuming you have only had the antibody test for hep c which only shows if you were exposed at sometime in the past it does not prove you are currently infected. About 25% of people who test positive for hep c antibodies were able to beat the virus on their own and are not currently infected with the virus.

To find out if you are currently infected you will need a second test for the virus itself called HCV RNA by PCR or similar. This will tell you if you are infected and how many copies of the virus are circulating in your blood called your viral load.

In general hep c is not considered to be an STD while sexual transmission is possible the CDC does not suggest long term monogamous couples  use barrier protection. There is a greater risk for those with multiple partners, engage in rough sexual practices, or in the presence of HIV.

Hep c is blood borne virus it requires blood to blood contact. One of the most common methods of transmission s IV drug use or blood transfusion with infected blood before testing was available. Also sharing drug straws and tattoos are a risk. Many things can cause elevated liver enzymes so that may or not be related. Many folks have no idea when and how they were infected some of us have likely guesses.

But really none of that matters the only thing that matters is getting diagnosed, getting treated, and getting cured.

There are new medicines approved in the last couple of years that are curing most people of hep c even those with advanced liver damage who were treated in the past with the old medicines and did not respond.

I would recommend against taking a bunch of supplements they likely won't help and they could cause harm.

See your doctor, get the test for the virus HCV RNA to confirm you are infected. If you are infected see a doctor familiar with treating hep c. Get the new medicine, get treated and get cured.

There are different treatments depending  on which genotype you have if you are infected but for most treatment is with minimal to no side effects. Treatment could be as simple as 1 pill a day for 8 weeks and you will be cured.

See your doctor and good luck
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 StillChoppin

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Re: Just got Lab results on Fri., newly diagnosed w/ Hep C
« Reply #2 on: September 26, 2016, 08:15:10 pm »
Thanks for responding Lynn.
It's hard for me to understand the lab results?
It does show reactive then next box shows signal to cutoff with a note below that says reactive sample will be tested against nucleic acid, I think?
Then there's 2 more boxes with HCV RNA quantitive
Which I believe is viral load then real time PCR??
So I don't understand if it will be retested or if these are retest results???
I called the testing Dr today because they said they would give me a referral Fri. to a Hep C specialist.
But didn't hear back from them Fri.
They said it'll be a couple weeks!!!!
COUPLE WEEKS??
I'm freaking out & want to see a Dr. Yesterday & their like
they will call you in a couple weeks very calmly..
Like I said before I feel good, no symptoms but I cannot help but think every minute destruction is happening to my liver??
Well until then I will keep reading & keep asking questions. I'm just glad there are others to talk to because I will not talk to anyone other than my wife because I know ppl will look at me like a monster!! Smh.
Waiting on her test results now to be sure I didn't pass it on..

Thanks do much Lynn I will be a regular as I learn more, im just glad this forum is available..



Offline KimInTheForest

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  • Believe in yourself
Re: Just got Lab results on Fri., newly diagnosed w/ Hep C
« Reply #3 on: September 26, 2016, 08:28:27 pm »
Hi Still Choppin, and welcome! I know it can be very stressful when you first find out. Even if you do have Hep C (and it isn't clear yet whether you actually do, or whether you merely have antibodies to Hep C), just remember these three things:

1. Hep C is now totally curable, and with just 12 weeks of pills for most people. (Much of the fear and hysteria around Hep C harks back to an earlier era when it was, more often than not, a life sentence.)

2. It  normally takes decades before serious problems develop. And even then, not everyone with Hep C will have those problems (cirrhosis, liver cancer, etc.). I had Hep C about 45 years before being cured last year with Harvoni. That is not unusual.

3. With so many people now being cured, follow-up tests are showing that liver damage from Hep C begins reversing itself in most people once the virus has been eliminated from their bodes.

So - hard as this may be to believe - you really don't have anything to worry about.

Keep us posted! :)

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 Lynn K

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  • Get tested, get treated, get cured, fight Hep c!
Re: Just got Lab results on Fri., newly diagnosed w/ Hep C
« Reply #4 on: September 26, 2016, 08:41:26 pm »
OK yeah it does look like maybe they did the HCV RNA test.

The first one referencing the signal cut off ratio was the antibody test saying the sample was reactive(meaning the antibody test was positive) so they were sending for further testing (tested against nucleic acid) RNA stands for ribonucleic acid so the test is looking for the genetic material of the virus itself.

You wrote "Then there's 2 more boxes with HCV RNA quantitative
Which I believe is viral load then real time PCR??"

Was there a number? My viral load was about 2 million there may be a second number with a number and log IU/mL that is also viral load ion a different math scale called the logarithmic scale.
Hep c is not a medical emergency it takes decades for hep c to cause liver damage if at all.

It has been said that for people infected for 20 years about 20% will develop liver cirrhosis but that means 80% do not.

Hep c for most is a without symptoms which is why it is called a silent illness.

Just for prospective, I was likely infected in 1978 or 79 I learned I was infected when I donated blood in the fall of 1990. I treated 3 separate times with what medicines were available back then but had no response to treatment but I was followed closely what is called watchful waiting...

I had liver biopsies every 5 years and with each biopsy I had progressively more liver damage until in Jan 2008 I was diagnosed with liver cirrhosis but that was after being infected for likely 37 years of infection. There are many folks here who had hep c for just as long and have no liver damage.

It is good that your wife is getting tested for peace of mind but I dont recall anyone here who's spouse contracted hep c there are many of examples of couples where one has hep c and the other does not.

I am pretty open with people about hep c and have had coworkers refer friends to me who have questions about their own or their spouses hep c and treatment options. But I totally understand being open about hep c is not everyone's idea of a good idea. Just do what feels right for you.

The number one thing you can do at least for right now is not to drink at least until you confirm how much damage you may have. Also be cautious with Tylenol and take no more than 1200 mg/day.

What you will want to know is your viral load but really just to add viral load does not equal extent of illness it is used to determine course of treatment. Also you will want to know your genotype it will be something like 1a, 1b, 2a, 2b etc...

Following is a list of the different genotypes of chronic Hepatitis C:

Genotype 1a
Genotype 1b
Genotype 2a, 2b, 2c & 2d
Genotype 3a, 3b, 3c, 3d, 3e & 3f
Genotype 4a, 4b, 4c, 4d, 4e, 4f, 4g, 4h, 4i & 4j
Genotype 5a
Genotype 6a

Genotype 1a is the most common in the US and can be treated with a medicine called Harvoni and other medicines as well. For someone who has not been treated before with little to no liver damage the odds of being cured are around 99% or better.

Again take a deep breath and let it out slowly

You both will be ok it is just a matter of getting all this sorted out

Good luck
« Last Edit: September 26, 2016, 08:45:47 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!

Offline StillChoppin

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  • Posts: 43
Re: Just got Lab results on Fri., newly diagnosed w/ Hep C
« Reply #5 on: September 27, 2016, 05:38:01 am »
I really appreciate the info & the answers...
If I understand you correctly than my viral load was
1021189 on the quantitive  test then the other quantitive was 6.0.
I don't drink..
Never have. If I bring a beer a year that's alot.
Drugs were my thing don't know why?
I waited until I turned 28 to try them too.
Why so late?? Curiosity maybe.
If it was contracted during drug use (straw sharing)
Than probably less than 10 yrs ago.
But if it was contracted by my first tattoo back in 1991
 than its about 20 yrs.
I don't know what chances are of contracting by tattoos.
Like I also said earlier my liver function was off back in 1998 - 99 but could have been for other reasons??
Again I appreciate the help from everyone..

Offline Philadelphia

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Re: Just got Lab results on Fri., newly diagnosed w/ Hep C
« Reply #6 on: September 27, 2016, 08:14:23 am »
You could send yourself crazy looking for how you contracted the virus. Harness your energy and concentrate on getting treatment. We've all been in your shoes - it's quite a shock! But this forum is a great source of information, so stick around!
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 Lynn K

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  • Member
  • Posts: 4,543
  • Get tested, get treated, get cured, fight Hep c!
Re: Just got Lab results on Fri., newly diagnosed w/ Hep C
« Reply #7 on: September 27, 2016, 10:39:58 am »
Totally agree with Philadelphia like chasing smoke many will never know. I tried studs also just 3 times when I was 18 and got a tattoo under less than pristine circumstances (bar in Germany that catered to soldiers while I was in the Army)

So could have been the straw depending on the tattoo shop (did they use fresh ink, did they have an autoclave?) but none of that matters the only thing that does is finding out where you stand health wise and getting treated.

Here is a link about liver function tests and some causes of elevated numbers

http://www.mayoclinic.org/symptoms/elevated-liver-enzymes/basics/causes/sym-20050830

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 StillChoppin

  • Member
  • Posts: 43
Re: Just got Lab results on Fri., newly diagnosed w/ Hep C
« Reply #8 on: September 27, 2016, 11:28:38 am »

 


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