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Author Topic: I am assuming the tests were right...please provide advice...  (Read 8884 times)

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Offline Layla123

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I am assuming the tests were right...please provide advice...
« on: February 14, 2017, 02:56:55 pm »
I had posted previously in the AM I Infected forum...so if this sounds familiar sorry....So I donated blood around the 27th of January.....on Feb 3 I received a letter stating that I tested positive for HEP C RNA and negative for the antibody test....on February 5th I took another bloodtest and tested negative for the antibody. They did not do RNA testing....I then scheduled an appointment with my GP who looked over my last blood test from 12/8 where my AST and ALT were both very normal. I had a tattoo on 12/21 and am now thinking that this is where I got infected...I say this because last week I took my normal 9 weeks blood test which checks most of my normal blood levels (I take testosterone)....I got the results earlier today and my AST is 105 and my ALT 234.....My GP took the actual HEP C bloodwork from my lastnight which would confirm if I was infected, my load and the strain....I will get the results tomorrow, but based on the AST and ALT numbers from the results I recd today I have to assume that I was recently affected....less than 8 weeks ago....So hearing this..is it normal for my AST and ALT to be that high if i Have recently been infected? As mentioned both were very normal in my 12/8 bloodwork (mid 30 range)...Also, my doctor wasnt so convinced that I was actually infected because of the negative antibody test, but now im sure if he sees these two AST and ALT numbers he will agree. At the appointment I asked him what are the next steps if I am infected...he says he will recommend me to the head of the gastro department of a well known hospital....Obviously I am very, very nervous and having way too much anxiety....Does anyone think that I could have liver damage based on the AST and ALT numbers? is it normal for these numbers to be this high if just recently infected? if you could provide me with any advice, comments, recommendations Id greatly appreciate it......THANK YOU IN ADVANCE

Offline lporterrn

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  • LucindaPorterRN
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Re: I am assuming the tests were right...please provide advice...
« Reply #1 on: February 14, 2017, 04:06:48 pm »
Although it is unusual to see, it looks like you were infected and caught it early. There are other remote possibilities, but I am looking at the obvious. Yes, it is normal for the ALT to be that high, in fact they are usually much higher. Typically antibodies show up between 8 and 12 weeks post exposure, so they should be showing up soon. The fact that your ALT is still relatively low for an acute infection, I suspect that antibody will be showing up in the next month.

Here's the most important part - you might clear this on your own. You don't say your age, but I am guessing from your handle that you are female. If you are under 40 and female, you have an excellent chance of clearing this on your own. So, personally, I would wait at least 6 months after your tattoo and see if you have RNA. If you don't clear, the treatment is quite straight-forward, so either way, you will likely be free of this before you know it. 

Take precautions so you don't pass it or get another infection. https://www.hepmag.com/basics/hepatitis-c-basics/hepatitis-c-prevention If you are clear and test + for HCV antibody (or go through treatment), keep in mind that you will have HCV antibody for 20 or more years, possibly forever, and get proof that you don't have HCV in case you apply for life insurance. Also, you won't be able to donate blood but you can be an organ donor. Please let us know what you find out as you go along.

You may find this helpful: http://www.hepatitisc.uw.edu/go/screening-diagnosis/acute-diagnosis/core-concept/all
« Last Edit: February 14, 2017, 04:09:56 pm by lporterrn »
Lucinda Porter, RN
1988 Contracted HCV
1997 Interferon nonresponder
2003 PEG + ribavirin responder-relapser
2013 Cured (Harvoni + ribavirin clinical trial)

Offline Layla123

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Re: I am assuming the tests were right...please provide advice...
« Reply #2 on: February 15, 2017, 11:19:55 am »
Thank you so much lporterrn for your detailed response...I am a male 50 years old...Layla is a song that was on the radio while creating my acct. Lol.....So all signs point to me being infected 8 weeks ago from a tattoo...Ive had some interesting ailments that I am wondering if they could be attributed to my infection...three most notable symptoms I ave experienced are...about a month ago I started waking up in the middle of the night in a cold sweat....which is not entirely uncommon for me since I have had some issues with arrhythmias... but have not had night sweats in a few years....Around the same time I started getting headaches...my guess is that I have had a headache 20 of the last 30 days....including one this morning....and lastly I started waking up with a serious dry mouth - so much so, that I went out and bought a humidifier...with little resolve...I did buy a bottle of Biotene which has helped....My question to the board is...Do any of these symptoms spound familiar and can be attributed to me being infected 8 weeks ago? Also, if so, will they subside eventually...im not a big fan of taking tylenol but my head hurts like heck with these headaches...Thanks agin for you comments and suggestions.

Offline Lynn K

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Re: I am assuming the tests were right...please provide advice...
« Reply #3 on: February 15, 2017, 03:48:19 pm »
Most people who are infected with hep c experience few symptoms.

For the few who experience an acute phase with symptoms this link describes symptoms which may be experienced.


What are the symptoms of acute hepatitis C?
Symptoms don’t always appear immediately. Symptoms may be noticeable within 14 days in some people. Others may take as long as six months to produce any sign. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the average period it takes to show symptoms is six to seven weeks. However, 75 percent of people who contract acute hepatitis C never experience any symptoms.

Symptoms of acute hepatitis C range from very mild to severe. They include:

loss of appetite
abdominal pain
joint pain
dark urine
light, clay-colored bowel movements
jaundice, or yellowing of the skin and eyes
If your doctor suspects that you have hepatitis C, they will draw blood to check for hepatitis C antibodies. Antibodies are substances your body produces when it’s fighting an infection. If you have HCV antibodies, your doctor may order a second test to confirm that the virus is still present. If your second test is also positive, you have hepatitis C.

If you are positive, your doctor may want to check your liver enzyme levels. This lets them know if the disease has affected your liver. Some people infected with the virus will have normal levels.

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!


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