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What is the reason for difficulty in diagnosing hepatitis C?

Im looking for answers on hepatitis c . I keep looking online but nothing is really helping me to understand why its hard for drs to diagnose the diseease. I read that you (doctors in general) would have to suspect it first in order to have the tests done for a proper diagnosis? But even after they told her she had it they would just drain her and load her up with pills and send her home just so she could come back in a couple of days and do it again. Iwhy didnt they tell us about getting a liver transplant WAY earlier? I would think they could see the chirosis of her liver in a scan or something the day they told her (over a year ago). I feel she could be alive right now. They didnt give us the transplant option till she was weeks away from death. Im just so confused about so many things. She got really sick just 2 months before she died. It happend so fast. Too fast.
Asked On : Sun, 13 Jan 2013
Answers:  1 Views:  56
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Gastroenterologist 's  Response
Hello, tabithaschrier,
Before 1992 we did not have reliable tests for diagnosing Hep-C viral infection.
Now , we can not only correctly diagnose Hep-C viral infection, we can actually
measure the virus count in an infected person and also find out the Geno type
of the virus. In most cases, any time someone has abnormal liver tests that
cannot be explained , always test for Hepatitis B & C.
If a person has risk factors, like multiple sex partners, intravenous drug abuse,
accidental needle prick and exposure to contaminated blood, sharing tooth brushes,
razors, getting tattoos with dirty needles, all of these are risk factors and the
doctor should know about this.
When once the diagnosis is established, after the HCV RNA viral count, Geno type,
the doctors can start treatment. The treatment consists of Interferon injections
along with an antiviaral like Ribavirin orally. The duration of treatment any where from
24-48 weeks with close monitoring of blood tests. If by week 12 there is significant
drop in viral count or disappearance, that is a good sign the treatment is working.
Now there are newer more effective drug combinations for cure of this.
If the damage to the liver is so severe and there is advanced cirrhosis with signs
of liver failure, then transplantation can be considered. There are instances of
Hep-C coming back after liver transplantation.
Hope this gives you some insight into the problem.
I wish you well.
Answered: Fri, 18 Jan 2013
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