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Hepatitis and HIV CoinfectionHepatitis and HIV Coinfection
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How often should a biopsy be done?
Mar 23, 2007

I am co-infected with HIV and HCV and had a liver biopsy like you recommended over two years ago. The test showed that I was at Stage 0 and Grade 1. So I chose not to seek treatment at this time. How often should I repeat the biopsy. My hepatitis viral load was high but my liver enzymes have been monitered by my regular doctor and they are ok too. Thank you so much for the service you provide, you can't begin to know how much you have helped me and eased my mind. Living with HIV and HCV isn't easy and I am so glad to have someone like you to help me. Thanks again.

Response from Dr. McGovern

In the past I used to do liver biopsies every three years, but now we are doing them about every two years in anyone that we have not treated to be certain that their disease stays minimal.

I think your original biopsy sounds great. Another one would reassure you that your disease is stable. If you are reluctant to have another, you can discuss non-invasive blood testing for scarring. I usually don't use these tests in my first evaluation of a patient, but as a follow up to your excellent biopsy, this can be considered as well. In general, however, I still prefer a liver biopsy.

Over time, we may lean more to these non invasive tests when we have more data proving their usefulness.

I am very happy you find this service useful. That is wonderful to know.

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