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Hepatitis and HIV CoinfectionHepatitis and HIV Coinfection
          
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Hepitis C
May 27, 2006

At the age of 18 years old I contracted Hepitis from IV drug use. I was treated at the time and pretty much figured that was a done thing. I knew I couldn't donate blood because of having had the virus but never really ?? it. Recently I was at the doctors office and the subject of me once having Hepitis was brought up and the the Doctor asked me if I knew what type I had. I told him no I just knew how I got it. So of course tests were run and they came back indicating Hepitis C. Now the doctor is wanting me to have a liver biopsy and possible start treatment. I don't understand how I could have this virus for 33 years with no side effects and now it become such a big issue. P.S. According to the blood tsts my liver panels are good. I appreciate any feed back you have on this. Thank You, Kathy

Response from Dr. McGovern

Excellent questions.

1. Hepatitis C (HCV) can cause liver disease in a patient who feels just fine. I suspect that your doctor found HCV RNA in your blood which means you are at risk for disease.

2. The fact that your liver tests are okay is reassuring, but does not rule out the possibility of liver disease.

3. I agree with your doctor that it would be good to have a liver biopsy. Hopefully since you got infected at a young age and your liver tests are okay, then you will have a good result.

Dr. M



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