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biopsy or not?
Nov 21, 2001

Several family members have been diagnosed with Hep C due to vaccine we all took 20 years for Hep B (gamma globulin). Every one of our doctors advised biopsy. Now an unrelated friend is diagnosed and her doctor tells her, her numbers are not high enough to worry about and it is up to her to have the biopsy as she may never get sick but the treatment is miserable. My doctor says this is terrible advise, that every positive diagnosis must be followed with biopsy. Is my friend's doctor not very knowledgeable or is my doctor over zealous?

Response from Dr. Rodriguez-Torres

I think that you should follow your doctors advise.Neither the ALT ,or the viral load correlate with the severity of the liver disease.The only test that will tell exactly how sick is the liver, and if therapy is needed at this time, is the liver biopsy. It is true that only from 15-30% of all cases will go on to develop cirrhosis and liver failure and cancer.The only way to sort out which cases have more risk of beeing in this group is the biopsy. Follow your doc ,seems that he knows what he is doing.!!



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