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HBV carrier and HCC
Jun 19, 2004

I am a 29 years old south asian man. I had been tested HBsAg positive 4 months ago during blood donation which was my first. Further test showed that AntiHBe positive,HBeAg negative and AntiHAV positive and normal AFP and Liver ultrasound. Doctor said i am an inactive carrier and I have to check for every 6 months for Liver cancer/cirrosis which scared me most. I occasionally smoke and have stopped Alchohol. How is the chance of getting HCC and is there any treatment to remove HepB virus now or in near future?

Response from Dr. McGovern

I agree with your physician that it is reasonable to have an ultrasound and blood tests of AFP every six months just to be certain that all is well with you. Your doctor is just being conservative and I agree with this approach.

The other thing to do is to recheck your hepatitis B s antigen to be sure it is persisting. Although I agree that you most likely acquired your hepatitis B a long time ago and this is chronic infection, we must remember that you only had your first blood test 4 months ago. Therefore, it is reasonable to recheck this to be certain that you didn't have acute hepatitis B infection in the recent past and you are on the way to clearing it. However, I suspect this is not the case and that you do have chronic infection.

As for treatment, the fact that you are HBe antigen negative and E antibody positive puts you in a good category of hepatitis B infection. Chances are that you do not have virus in your bloodstream, but a specific test for Hepatitis B DNA would be a reasonable thing to do to be certain. If you do not have virus in your blood, then there is no reason to take any treatment for hepatitis B.

Dr. McGovern

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