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What Are The Side Effects Of Hepatitis C Treatment

Favorite Hep C Alternative Medicine Resource

Managing Hepatitis C Treatment Side Effects in the Interferon Era

Although hep C can be successfully treated with modern medicine, many people turn to dietary supplements with the goal of curing their illness. The most commonly used is silymarin . Although the NCCIH says that no supplement is effective for hep C, the center provides the latest scientific data on a range of products, including probiotics, zinc, licorice root, and colloidal silver.

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Hepatitis C And Blood Spills

When cleaning and removing blood spills, use standard infection control precautions at all times:

  • Cover any cuts or wounds with a waterproof dressing.
  • Wear single-use gloves and use paper towel to mop up blood spills.
  • Clean the area with warm water and detergent, then rinse and dry.
  • Place used gloves and paper towels into a plastic bag, then seal and dispose of them in a rubbish bin.
  • Wash your hands in warm, soapy water then dry them thoroughly.
  • Put bloodstained tissues, sanitary towels or dressings in a plastic bag before throwing them away.

Side Effects Of Treatment

Treatments with direct-acting antivirals have very few side effects. Most people find DAA tablets very easy to take.

You may feel a little sick and have trouble sleeping to begin with, but this should soon settle down.

Your nurse or doctor should be able to suggest things to help ease any discomfort.

You need to complete the full course of treatment to ensure you clear the hepatitis C virus from your body.

If you have any problems with your medicines, speak to your doctor or nurse straight away.

Side effects for each type of treatment can vary from person to person.

For a very small number of people, more severe side effects from hepatitis C treatments may include:

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When To Seek Medical Advice

See your GP if you persistently have any of the later symptoms above, or if they keep returning. They may recommend having a blood test that can check for hepatitis C. Read more about diagnosing hepatitis C.

None of the symptoms above mean you definitely have hepatitis C, but it’s important to get them checked out.

You should also speak to your GP about getting tested if there’s a risk you’re infected, even if you don’t have any symptoms. This particularly includes people who inject drugs or have done so in the past.

Read about the causes of hepatitis C for more information about who’s at risk of having the infection.

You May Not Be Able To Keep Drinking

Hepatitis C Treatment: Are Natural or Herbal Remedies Effective?

For some people, its a good idea to avoid alcohol after youve been cured of chronic hepatitis C, mainly because adult beverages might tax your damaged liver and cause additional liver damage.

The decision would depend on how much scarring or damage you have in the liver, says Menon. Your doctor would tell you when drinking is not advisable.

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Now: Daas Offer Real Hope To Patients

Some people with HCV have zero symptoms, but many others experience fatigue, nausea, and flu-like conditions that never seem to end. For Bill Remak, 66, of Petaluma, CA, HCV symptoms were a way of life. Diagnosed with chronic persistent hepatitis in 1966, he’s endured liver cancer, two liver transplants, and six years of failed interferon/ribavirin treatments. By the time he went on a new DAA in 2016, he didnt know what to expect. He was cured of HCV that year. Ive been able to see my kids get married and have grandchildren, Remak says. These are things I would have not experienced. How can you even put value to that? Its an incredible development.

What Will My Doctor Need To Know To Treat Me

If you want to be assessed for treatment, you need to make an appointment with a doctor. They will be mostly interested in the condition of your liver. Your doctor will organise, if possible, for you to have a Fibroscan examination. If Fibroscan is not available, your doctor will probably use an APRI test. This is an online calculator that estimates the health of your liver. It involves a blood test called a liver function test.

Dont forget, its very important to get a PCR test 12 weeks after finishing treatment this will mean the doctor can make sure you are cured.

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With Which Drugs Do Daas Interact With

  • Many drugs are metabolized from the body by enzymes in the liver. DAA are metabolized by one of the more important of these enzymes in the liver . As a result, drugs that enhance or reduce the activity of this liver enzyme will affect blood levels.
  • Some drugs increase the activity of CYP3A and result in reduced levels of DAA and thereby reduce their effectiveness, for example, corticosteroids .
  • Other drugs decrease the activity of CYP3A and result in elevated levels of the and possibly can lead to toxicity, for example, some of the anti-fungal drugs .
  • SomeHIVmedications may need to be changed while taking some of the hepatitis C DAA.
  • The list of drugs that interact with DAA is large and includes many commonly-used drugs. It is important to review all of the drugs that patients are taking to identify drugs that interact with these drugs before treatment is begun.
  • Interferons include drugs such as peginterferon alfa-2a , peginterferon alfa-2b , recombinant interferon alfa-2a , and recombinant interferon alfa-2b .
  • Pegylation slows the elimination of interferon from the body so that its effects last longer.
  • Pegylated interferons are given by injection once weekly.

How do interferons work?

Who should not use interferons?

Individuals with autoimmune hepatitis, decompensated liver disease, or allergy to interferons should not use these medications. Peginterferon cannot be used in newborns.

Dosage Forms and Administration:

Drug or food interactions:

Side effects:

  • fatigue,

What Causes Hepatitis C

How is hepatitis C treatment changing?

The hepatitis C virus causes hepatitis C. The hepatitis C virus spreads through contact with an infected persons blood. Contact can occur by

  • sharing drug needles or other drug materials with an infected person
  • getting an accidental stick with a needle that was used on an infected person
  • being tattooed or pierced with tools or inks that were not kept sterilefree from all viruses and other microorganismsand were used on an infected person before they were used on you
  • having contact with the blood or open sores of an infected person
  • using an infected persons razor, toothbrush, or nail clippers
  • being born to a mother with hepatitis C
  • having unprotected sex with an infected person

You cant get hepatitis C from

  • being coughed or sneezed on by an infected person
  • drinking water or eating food
  • hugging an infected person
  • shaking hands or holding hands with an infected person
  • sharing spoons, forks, and other eating utensils
  • sitting next to an infected person

A baby cant get hepatitis C from breast milk.18

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What Can People Do To Help The Medications Work Best

  • Take the medications every day
  • Stay in touch with pharmacy to be sure that all refills are ready on time
  • Take the medications exactly as prescribed
  • Do not skip doses
  • Get all blood tests done on time
  • Go to all visits with providers as recommended
  • Tell the provider about all other medications that are being taken – including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, herbs, and supplements
  • Complete the entire course of medication

Can Hepatitis C Be Treated

Yes, since 2010 enormous progress has been made in the treatment of chronic hepatitis C. New therapies called direct-acting antivirals are pills that act on the virus itself to eradicate it from the body, unlike older medicines like interferon injections which work by stimulating an immune response. These new treatments are very effective and can achieve cure rates of over 90%. In most situations now, there is no need for interferon, which was responsible for many of the side effects previously associated with HCV treatment. The new treatment combinations require shorter treatment durations , have reduced side effects and appear to be effective at all stages of the disease.

Because these new therapies are very new, they remain very expensive. As such, drug coverage from both government and private companies may require that your liver disease has progressed to a certain stage before they are willing to cover the cost of these drugs.

Your primary care physician may refer you to a specialist to determine whether you are eligible for treatment. A specialist will help you decide which drug therapy is best for you based on the severity of your liver disease, your virus genotype and whether or not you have been treated in the past.

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Older Meds Had Mental Health Side Effects

One serious drawback of older treatments: An increased risk for depression. Its prevalence ranged from 30-70% in HCV patients receiving early types of treatments, who also were at risk for psychosis, suicidal ideation, and suicide attempts. The correlation could have something to do with interferons role as an immune mediator, causing changes in enzymatic pathways involved in producing feel-good chemicals like serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine. People receiving interferon/ribavirin were often screened for mental health conditions before and during treatment, says Jennifer Eames, P.A.-C, director of the Physician Assistant Program at Hardin-Simmons University in Abilene, TX.

How Do You Prevent Hepatitis C From Spreading

Module 7: Side effects and implications for treatment
  • Avoid sharing the same needles: People who are intravenous drug users are at the risk of getting it because they may use the same needle many times. If the person snorts drugs cocaine this can also transmit the disease if the same straw is being used by another user.
  • Direct exposure to blood and blood products should not be done: If a person is a doctor or medical worker then they can get transmitted with infection if they come in direct contact of the blood. Therefore the equipment that is being used must be sterilized properly to prevent direct contact with blood and stop spreading it.
  • No sharing of personal care items: People must not share items of personal care with other people because they can be exposed to blood while shaving, or normal cuts thus it increases the danger of spreading it. If a person is already suffering from then they must take care that they do not spread it to other people by sharing the items.
  • Practising safe sex: It can be spread or transmitted through sexual activities or intercourse. The chance of getting hepatitis increases if you have HIV, multiple sex partners, or if you are engaged in rough sex. Therefore while having sex person must stay cautious and practice safe sex.

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If I Have Hepatitis C Infection Does This Mean I Am Going To Have Other Health Problems

Hepatitis C can cause scarring of the liver leading to cirrhosis and liver cancer. Other conditions have also been linked to hepatitis C and are known as extra-hepatic manifestations of hepatitis C. They include diabetes mellitus, arthritis, hypothyroid, and aplastic anemia among other conditions. Talk to your provider for more information.

Tips And Remedies To Help With Side Effects

There are things you can do to ease many of the side effects from hepatitis C treatment.

  • If fever or aches start a few hours after your interferon shot, try getting the shot at bedtime. Take acetaminophen or ibuprofen about 30-60 minutes before your shot. Check with your doctor about which would be best for you.
  • If you start to feel depressed, talk to your doctor. They might prescribe an antidepressant. Exercise can also boost your mood. For anxiety or crankiness, exercise regularly, get plenty of sleep, and try relaxation exercises like yoga or tai chi.
  • If you have stomach problems, take your medications with food. Eat smaller, healthier meals and skip spicy, acidic foods. Ask your doctor about medications that might help ease nausea or diarrhea.
  • Use moisturizing soaps and lotions to help with dry skin. Don’t take long, hot showers or baths.
  • For a dry mouth or sour mouth, brush your teeth often and suck on sugar-free candies. Drink lots of water.
  • Remember that these side effects will typically go away once you’re cured, so stick with your treatment. Work with your doctor on your treatment plan so that you can manage any problems and try to get the virus out of your body as soon as possible

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    Who Is More Likely To Get Hepatitis C

    People more likely to get hepatitis C are those who

    • have injected drugs
    • had a blood transfusion or organ transplant before July 1992
    • have hemophilia and received clotting factor before 1987
    • have been on kidney dialysis
    • have been in contact with blood or infected needles at work
    • have had tattoos or body piercings
    • have worked or lived in a prison
    • were born to a mother with hepatitis C
    • are infected with HIV
    • have had more than one sex partner in the last 6 months or have a history of sexually transmitted disease
    • are men who have or had sex with men

    In the United States, injecting drugs is the most common way that people get hepatitis C.13

    What Are The Post

    Universal Hepatitis C Treatment

    As a whole when you are undergoing the treatment, your life patterns would change. You might be asked to adhere to a particular lifestyle, and your diet habits will be altered. You might not be in a position to do all the work you have been able to do before. Severe liver damages can make you bed-ridden, and you might have to take the help of palliative care in some extreme cases.

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    Ddi As Complication In Hcv Therapy

    Table 3.

    Induction and inhibition of enzymes or transporters by active substances for HCV therapy

    However, theoretical potential for interactions does not always result in clinically relevant DDI. When predicting clinically relevant DDI, the following point needs to be kept in mind. DDI studies with reliable clinical end points or pharmacokinetic data are most eligible to determine clinical significance but still need an expert for interpretation, and in most cases such studies are not available . Table 4 shows commonly used concomitant medications in HCV, clinically relevant DDI with modern HCV regimens and the suggested management based on prescription information , and authors expertise .

    Table 4.

    For additional information:

    Diagnosis Of Hepatitis C

    If you are at risk of hepatitis C infection, or think you may have been exposed to hepatitis C in the past, see your doctor for an assessment of your liver health. This will include blood tests and possibly a non-invasive test for liver damage .

    There are 2 blood tests used to diagnose hepatitis C. Usually these can be done at the same time but sometimes they will be done separately.

    The first test known as a hepatitis C antibody test can tell you whether you have ever been exposed to hepatitis C.

    It may take 2 to 3 months from the time of infection until a blood test can detect antibodies to hepatitis C, so there is a window period during which you cannot tell if you are or have been infected. In this time, take precautions to prevent the potential spread of the virus.

    The second test is called hepatitis C PCR, which will be done if the antibody test is positive. This determines if the virus is still present in your blood or liver or if you have already cleared the infection.

    If you have cleared the virus or had successful treatment to cure it, the PCR test will be negative.

    A liver ultrasound or Fibroscan can also be performed to assess if you have any liver damage.

    If your doctor is inexperienced in diagnosing hepatitis C you can call the LiverLine on for information, and to find a GP who can help you.

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    Why Cure Hep C

    Curing your hep C clears the virus from your body. It reduces liver inflammation and can help reverse fibrosis and even cirrhosis.

    Live free from the worry of hep C knowing that you no longer have hep C can help you feel better about yourself. For example, you may no longer feel worried about passing hep C to other people. There has been no better time to think about hep C treatment.

    Find out more about the benefits of clearing hep C call the Hepatitis Infoline.

    Grace talks about her experience of being cured of hepatitis C with new, highly effective treatments. Theres never been a better time to be cured of hep C.

    What Are The Complications Of Hepatitis C

    International Hepatitis Day

    Hepatitis C is the kind of infection which is related to the inflammation or swelling of the liver. Therefore it is important that the liver must be kept healthy.

    • If a person is suffering from chronic hepatitis C then he/she can experience liver damage. The symptoms of infection are seen at the time of liver damage and before that they are unknown.
    • Due to hepatitis C, 60-70 people can develop chronic liver disease and cirrhosis is developed in 5-20 people which is again a disease related to the liver. Overtime 1-5 people die from liver cancer or cirrhosis.
    • Chronic hepatitis C can get developed due to hepatitis C virus. When there is cirrhosis then the patient liver stops functioning and the scars get developed and if this situation is not treated then it can lead to liver failure.
    • Once cirrhosis gets developed it can get developed into life-threatening complications and becomes the most common cause of liver transplant.

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