Jun 9, 2011
My husband received Hep B&C from a transplant from the stolen body parts scandal that was in the news several years ago. The liver doctor says his body has done a "self heal" and that he no longer is infected. However, he is not allowed to donate blood and we were told he must check the hepatitis box when filling out forms since it shows in his bloodwork that he has had it. My concern is this: Can hepatitis reactivate and will alcohol have any affect if the hepatitis is no longer active? Thank you for your help.
Response from Dr. McGovern
If his HCV cleared, that is likely to be sustained, although there are a few cases reports of reemergence of viremia (virus in the blood) with immunosuppression.
HBV can also reactivate with immunosuppression so his doctors are probably monitoring his blood tests serially over time.
Alcohol use - in heavy amounts - can have an immunosuppressant effect. I would also have conversations with his doctor - who know his condition well - as to whether this would be potentially harmful in light of his medical illness.
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