Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Hepatitis C News Nov 16th: The Good, Bad and ?

Good afternoon folks, over at newsmax.com you can find the top ten symptoms of hepatitis;

Flu-like symptoms that may last for weeks or months.
These include manifestations such as unexplained fever, chills, weakness and fatigue, and difficulty in sleeping and concentration.
Appetite changes and feeling liver pain.
Persistent presence of jaundice may be manifested at a chronic stage of hepatitis and is a top symptom of hepatitis C.
The condition turns the skin and the whites of the eyes yellow.
Other symptoms include dark-colored urine or pale colored stools.
Nausea or vomiting.

Note from Tina the blogger:

Although these symptoms are significant and accurate often advice online does not due justice to the early symptoms of chronic HCV. Commonly a site will publish a vignette with ineffectual information containing little or no substance. This disease has been described by numerous health care professionals as having no symptoms until after years of progression. When the reality is a doctor may ignore early symptoms. As patients we know Hepatitis C is not asymptomatic. Seldom considered are the struggles patients encounter when attempting to communicate these symptoms to their physicians. The patient is running back and forth to doctors knowing something is wrong, but never discovering what it is. We then determine a few possible scenarios to render these symptoms; either we're lazy, it must be stress, not living a healthy lifestyle, sleep deprived, finally we regress and diagnose ourselves with the only disease possible, hypochondria. We're then given the validity we seek when family and friends share our profound analogy. We abandon all instincts and succumb to" its all in our head". This only prolongs our diagnosis, and treatments.

I clearly remember my experience before being diagnosed with hepatitis C. The regular visits to the doctor, the frustration of fatigue, and the confusion I felt after being repeatedly told there was nothing wrong with me.

Oddly enough this can be related to a personal experience I had with my car recently;
I hate it when there’s a problem with my car. I hear a noise, a click click click, or what-have-you, and I think, that’s not good. So I take my car to the mechanic, listening for the noise all the way there, trying to build the perfect description of it in my mind so I may relate the problem more easily to others. I tell the mechanic my beautifully crafted illustration of my car’s ailment, the mechanic takes it for a test drive and says nothing is wrong. NOTHING IS WRONG!? There is a noise, I am sure a multitude of things are wrong… But I accept the expert’s opinion and return home only to repeat the process weeks later with a different mechanic, which inevitably yields the same results. The problem with this of course is that the car still runs. I can’t argue with the fact that the car still runs. So I keep driving it, hearing that noise until one day… guess what happens? “It breaks?” Is that kinda what your experience sounds like folks?

Here we go again with salvia and HCV in the news : Woman with hepatitis C spits in eyes, face of officer HAVERHILL — A woman with hepatitis C who spat blood and saliva into the face and eyes of a police officer was sentenced to a year at MCI-Framingham after pleading guilty in Haverhill District Court yesterday.

From BURLINGTON, Mass., Decision Resources, here on the blog : The Hepatitis C Virus Drug Market Will Nearly Triple by 2014 but, Thereafter, the Market Will Decline Substantially Through 2019 Due to Decreasing Disease Prevalence and the High Efficacy of New Treatments
The Standard of Care Will Change Significantly With the Introduction of New Classes of HCV-Specific Antiviral Agents

News from Arizona this morning @ medical news today "The American Society of Transplantation (AST), the American Society of Transplant Surgeons (ASTS) and the United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) have issued a letter to Governor Jan Brewer (R-AZ) requesting a meeting to discuss the recent elimination of certain organ transplants from the benefits available to Arizona residents dependent on the Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System (AHCCCS). The benefit changes became effective on October 1, 2010
Sad news today from a Valley Man Who Has Been Denied A Life-Saving Liver Transplant
POSTED: 11:22 am MST November 16, 2010
PHOENIX -- A Valley man was in the surgery room, prepped and ready for his life-saving liver transplant when doctors told him the state's Medicaid plan wouldn't cover the procedure.
Amazing story from a young man living in Georgia;David Krech, is recovering from a rare, lifesaving heart/liver transplant on October 15 at the University of Maryland Medical Center. The 13-hour operation followed a five-month journey as he awaited a suitable heart and liver donor continue readiing............

From UNOS site this morning friends :
Waiting list candidates as of today 10:20am 109,664
Active waiting list candidates as of today 10:20am 72,307
Transplants January - August 2010 19,246
Donors January - August 2010 9,729

Honoring Donors and Their Families

The National Donor Memorial honors America's organ, eye and tissue donors. It is a memorial garden and Web site designed by a volunteer committee of donor family members, living donors and transplant recipients from across the country. Learn more >

Years ago I met a wonderful lady online who goes by the name of Imkindly. She has been active in supporting the HCV community through the Liver Failure Support Group on Delphi. A reminder from my friend: " A lot of people with Hepatitis C Virus seem to be under the impression that they can't be organ donors. They can. There's a shortage of organ donors right now (that's why everyday 15 people on the organ transplant waiting list Die waiting.) According to most OPO's....the number one reason that people don't sign an organ donor card is that they think their body is "too sick" and "wouldn't be used anyway". Organ donors save lives.People with Hepatitis C can be organ donors". You or your family can learn more here about registering to become an organ donor .

At medscape this morning: Acute Hepatitis C in HIV-infected Men Who Have Sex With Men: an Emerging Sexually Transmitted Infection How can acute hepatitis C develop in HIV-infected men who have sex with men?

Also today the Hepatitis C: Top 10 Treatment Centers .
November 16, 2010 (Denver, Colorado) — The first generation of rapid screening tests for the hepatitis C virus (HCV) antibody, which use blood and oral fluids, underwent field testing in September at 4 sites: Dallas, Texas; Denver, Colorado; Seattle, Washington; and New York City. The tests had considerable variation in performance across the 4 test sites, with wide ranges in sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, and negative predictive value.
World radiology round-up, Nov. 15 by Brendon Nafziger, Writer
In this edition, a multitude of (allegedly) misread mammograms. And Mayo Clinic gets slapped with the first lawsuit over the notorious RT hepatitis C case.
Human Genome Sciences Inc. has drugs in its pipeline that include novel drugs to treat hepatitis C, lupus, inhalation anthrax, and cancer.
despite mixed results in studiesBy Matthew Perrone ADELPHI, Md. (AP) - Federal health experts say an experimental drug from Human Genome Sciences appears effective for treating lupus, a difficult-to-treat disease for which there has not been a new drug in 50 years.The Food and Drug Administration's panel of experts voted 10-5 that the drug Benlysta substantially relieves pain and flare-ups caused by lupus.The recommendation, which the FDA is not required to follow, brings the drug one step closer to market.
Panelists who voted against the drug pointed out that it didn't work in certain patient groups.Lupus is a potentially fatal ailment in which the body attacks its own tissue and organs. Ninety percent of lupus patients are women. The disease causes skin rashes, joint pain and inflammation of the kidneys and other organs.

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