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Author Topic: Just tested positive and in disbelief  (Read 543 times)

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Offline Freahugs

  • Member
  • Posts: 12
Just tested positive and in disbelief
« on: December 31, 2019, 07:41:01 pm »
Hi everyone,

Im pretty shocked right now as I just got the call yesterday from my doctor that I’ve been tested positive.  I remember getting a missed call from her and telling my co workers how weird it is that my doctor called because she never does that. I felt like I’ve gotten the wind knocked out of me. I don’t know much about the infection but I do know I’m not the typical candidate. And never in a million years would I have thought this would happen to me. I’m scared. Terrified. Staying strong. Laughing with co workers but then my thoughts turn to how, “I. Have. Hepatitis. C.” My parents were just begging me last week to please get married. How their friends’ daughter  had an extravagant marriage and how well taken care of she is. My thoughts turn from fear to how are my parents going to react? And I am scared how their love towards me may be conditional, based on how good I look in front of their peers. My dad, who never has asked me for anything, begged me just last month to reconsider dating this one guy who is absolutely amazing but I’m just not attracted to him. And alas, I am single, and now I have hepatitis c.

I work in a hospital, so today when I noticed a patient who is on hepatitis c meds, I paid extra attention.

My co workers are now talking about homelessness and how a lot of them are ivdu, a risk factor for hepatitis c. They’re now talking about drug users in general. Intranasal cocaine is a risk factor for hepatitis c. I can’t even engage in this conversation right now.

I will be getting the viral load lab drawn today. I started weeping in front of the lab technician and he offered me a tissue.

I’ve been racking my brain trying to figure out how this could have happened. I’m not the typical candidate and I always just thought hep c was just a distant thing and something only iv drug users get or people who got blood transfusions before the 90s. I’m a range of emotions as to how I could have gotten this- I’m guessing it might be from the tattoo I got in Korea 7 months ago from a novice. And also the tattoo artist took 2 hours to do the tiny tattoo and it faded out within the first 2 weeks :( I texted her and she said she swears that she always uses new needles but I’m not sure if sterilizes her equipment etc. how can I really know?

I already told my sister last night. We had a huge falling out literally two days ago and I was ready to be an only child but now, I am depending on her like my life depends on it, which it actually probably does because there’s no one else I can tell.

I am about it meet up with my friend who had gone to Korea with me several months back and who had gotten a beautiful tattoo there but from a more experienced artist. But if anyone needs to know about my infection, she does, since she also got an illegal tattoo there.

I have a lot of questions that I was hoping people could answer:

- if we’re cured of hepatitis c, is there a chance it could come back? Or is it like a viral cold, that gets cured and never comes back
- Will hepatitis c always be on my medical record ie will this be something I have to disclose with every provider even after cure?
- Do people still find love after diagnosis?
- How common is sex the reason for transmission?
- How has people’s lives changed?
- Has anyone experienced spontaneous clearing?

Thank you for reading and for your responses in advance.

Offline Mugwump

  • Member
  • Posts: 775
  • My number of posts means nothing, piscor ergo sum!
Re: Just tested positive and in disbelief
« Reply #1 on: December 31, 2019, 09:06:50 pm »
One step at a time is the best course of action. Firstly establish the genotype and viral load. Have a  CBC "complete blood count test" along with a liver panel to see what damage has occurred or if any significant damage is being done. Then work on getting treated asap. The worst thing to do is worry about how you acquired the disease or over react to the fact that you have it. HCV is not very easily transmitted sexually and most couples have no problems conceiving children.


First and foremost if you have only been shown to have antibodies to the disease get the RNA by PCR test. This test is usually done along with a genotype test and the genotype portion is only done if the initial test discovers a viral load that is quantifiable. So slow things down and don't jump to conclusions about the state of your infection until you have all the facts.


All my best Eric


Caution shameless self promotion below :-)
https://www.hepmag.com/article/eric-reesor-27742-782589663
DING DONG MY DRAGON (HCV) IS FINALLY DEAD!

Offline Lynn K

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 4,493
  • Get tested, get treated, get cured, fight Hep c!
Re: Just tested positive and in disbelief
« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2020, 09:57:41 am »
-if we’re cured of hepatitis c, is there a chance it could come back? Or is it like a viral cold, that gets cured and never comes back

After treating with the new generation DAA hep c meds the odds of cure are excellent. The only way hep c could come back after you are still clear of the virus 12 weeks after finishing treatment is if you got a new infection.

- Will hepatitis c always be on my medical record ie will this be something I have to disclose with every provider even after cure?

It is part of your medical history same as if you had the measles as a child. Since you will always test positive for hep c antibodies you should not have that test done.
 
- Do people still find love after diagnosis?

Of course.

- How common is sex the reason for transmission?

Sexual transmission for long term monogamous couples is rare. For those who engage in rough sexual practices like BDSM where exposure to blood is possible or for those with multiple sexual partners and in the presence of the HIV virus the risk of contracting hep c is increased.   

- How has people’s lives changed?

It didn’t except I was more cautious around others if I got a cut.

- Has anyone experienced spontaneous clearing?

It is estimated about 25% of people are able to clear the virus on their own without medicine.
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 Freahugs

  • Member
  • Posts: 12
Re: Just tested positive and in disbelief
« Reply #3 on: January 01, 2020, 11:14:08 am »
Thank you for your response Lynn and Eric. Happy new years. Do you know if we have to get tested even after cure or is this something you just ask your provider for on your own for your own satisfaction and how often?

Offline Lynn K

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 4,493
  • Get tested, get treated, get cured, fight Hep c!
Re: Just tested positive and in disbelief
« Reply #4 on: January 01, 2020, 11:45:40 am »
To know if treatment was effective you should be tested for the virus 12 weeks after completing treatment. Even if your HCV RNA by PCR result at end of treatment (EOT) says not detected there could possible be a small amount of virus cells that have still survived but are less than the tests ability to detect which is why the result is not detected not zero virus.

But when tested with the HCV RNA test 12 weeks after treatment has concluded and the result is still not detected you are 99.9% assured of cure. Some doctors like to check again at 6 months post treatment just to be sure.

For myself, as I had failed three previous treatments with the old standard treatment of shots of interferon weekly with other medicines and one treatment with the new DAA meds (one of the first approved) plus having liver cirrhosis for quite a while I was in the category of difficult to treat so I did repeat the HCV RNA at one year and two years post treatment just to be totally sure. Since I have cirrhosis I am seen by my hepatologist every year and have blood testing and an abdominal ultrasound every six months to monitor my liver cirrhosis for possible signs of HCC (liver cancer) so I see my liver enzyme test results regularly which are in normal range.
« Last Edit: January 01, 2020, 11:51:59 am 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!

 


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