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Author Topic: Need advice grandpa tested positive :/  (Read 7582 times)

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Offline notsureaboutthis

  • Newbie
  • Posts: 1
Need advice grandpa tested positive :/
« on: February 27, 2016, 11:56:30 am »

My grandfather of 83 years old has just tested positive for Hep C. We had no idea he had this, and because he has been getting old i was assigned by family to help take care of him considering im only in school fulltime and dont work. I just have a few questions to ask.

1. Do i need testing if i used his shaving razor?

2. How long do i have to test if i need testing?

3. Will my grandpa be okay if he is diagnosed with cirrhosis? Can he be put on harvoni? we don't know what genotype he has yet or his viral load. He sees a specialist this upcoming week.

Thank you

Offline beto

  • Member
  • Posts: 548
  • "no risk it, no biscuit"
Re: Need advice grandpa tested positive :/
« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2016, 12:58:49 pm »
Hey not so sure,

More thorough posters are gonna chime in here and load you with good information and links that will help.  My off the cuff two cents; 1st, consulting a specialist (GI doc, or hepatologist) or, a savvy GP. Yes you should get tested if you used his razor.  Not to freak out though...a very uncommon source, however, any blood to blood contact whereby the skin has been broken is a possible entry scenario.  Not easy to get that way, but possible. 

If it has been over 6 month since using shaver, a simple blood test will show positive or negative antibodies.  If positive, the next step would be to see if it is active and to get a viral load.  A liver panel will be likely to see if enzymes are elevated.  You are probably OK.  If god forbid you were to find out you are infected, there are cures available now, obviously.

83 years old is not what it once was.  My father in law is 83 and he is still "curling" in Canada.  Cirrhosis?  Was he diagnosed?  There are many levels and complications with it, however, I will let LynnK jump in on that.  She is 8 years into dealing with it and is fairing well.  I personally was diagnosed F4 that improved after harvoni, but I am still not so sure about the initial reading.  There are many cases of reversal of fibrosis, but we are a ways from perfect diagnostic protocols.

Whether to do harvoni is between him, family and your doc.  Most people have very mild side effects.  Because of the cirrhosis, the best way to halt progression, is to cure HCV.  If it were me, or my gramps I would do it.

good luck...
HCV/nonA,nonB acute phase 1975
HCV detected active 1990
HCV persistent chronic diagnosis 1995
1995 liver enzymes mild elevations
1996 Biopsy F2 fibrosis
treatment naive geno 1-A
2000-to early 2015 Viral load 150, 000 to 800, 000
recent liver enzymes before treatment alt/ast 59to209,  Fibroscan F4,cirrhosis
start tx Harvoni 7/11/2015
6.5 week-UD-ast/alt 25/25
9wk-UD-ast18 alt23
10/3/15 completed tx
11/5/15 new fibroscan f0-f1 amazed
6wk EOT UD ast/alt 20/20
25wk-SVR! 19/18

Offline Lynn K

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 4,544
  • Get tested, get treated, get cured, fight Hep c!
Re: Need advice grandpa tested positive :/
« Reply #2 on: February 28, 2016, 10:53:00 pm »
Hi notsureaboutthis and welcome to the forum

Thanks Beto for the intro lol!

Ok yes you will want to be tested at 6 months after you used his razor for antibodies to hep c. The reason is at 6 months if you haven't developed antibodies by then you are in the clear. If you do test positive for antibodies then you would be tested for the virus itself a test called HCV RNA by PCR. Worst case you have hep c and get treated and cured. Your treatment if you need treatment could be as simple as one pill a day for 8 weeks.

As far as your grandfather if he is in good health otherwise he can and should treat his hep c especially if he has cirrhosis. Actually if he does have cirrhosis it makes it easier to convince his insurance (I assume Medicare) to get him treated.

As Beto said I was diagnosed with cirrhosis in Jan 2008 and just treated with Harvoni for 24 weeks and am cured at 57 years old. I had hep c for probably 37 years and treated 4 times previously with no success.

Not everyone who has hep c even for many years will develop cirrhosis. The data says about 20% of people with hep c for 20 years will develop cirrhosis but the other 80% don't have cirrhosis some may have little to no damage so it is entirely possible your grandfather doesn't have cirrhosis. But even if he does he can live for many ore years especially if he treats and cures hep c.

Good luck to you all
« Last Edit: February 28, 2016, 10:54:38 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!

Offline Joe NM

  • Member
  • Posts: 46
Re: Need advice grandpa tested positive :/
« Reply #3 on: February 29, 2016, 02:35:31 pm »
I'd just like to add, try not to let stress about the price of these medications get in the way of making the best possible decisions. Medicare prescription insurance (usually Part D, it's a separate card from the red-white-blue Medicare card) is covering these medicines with no restrictions right now. Sometimes they hit you with a large co-pay (the portion of the cost not covered by insurance), but if it comes to that, check out the Patient Access Network Foundation (panfoundation.org). If your grandpa's annual income isn't too high, they'll usually cover all out-of-pocket expenses for the medications. You can also call them with any questions at 866-316-7263.
HCV Case Manager
Type-1 diabetic
Connoisseur of battling insurance companies, and when that fails resorting to 'Sample Pharmacies' and sneaking insulin back from Mexico to survive.
Kindred spirit/admirer of all on this forum!
Here to help in any way I can!


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