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hepititus b
May 20, 2006

Dr. McGovern,

My wife's mother have been ill for quite a while and have been in the hospital for several weeks in the UK for liver damage. Unfortunately, doctors there did not realised that she had hepititus b and have been causing severe liver damage. Without any warning, family members have been visiting her while she was at the hospital (without mask). What is the likelihood that they may have contracted hepititus b as well? And at the mother's age (approx. 61yrs old), what can be done? Appreciate your help.

CONCERNED HUSBAND

Response from Dr. McGovern

There are many treatments for hepatitis B. She should have complete evaluation for the severity of her disease and considered for therapy by an expert hepatologist. If she has "decompensated cirrhosis" she may still be a candidate for a liver transplant; however, I have seen some patients improve remarkably with therapy.



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