Treatment and Cure

Hepatitis treatment

There is a treatment and also a good chance of a cure.

The treatment is a bit difficult, but it is tolerable and cures about 50% of those infected.

MEDICINES

The drugs approved by health agencies for the treatment of hepatitis C are two:

- Interferon and

- Ribavirin.

They should be used together.

TREATMENT

Interferon is a subcutaneous injection, using a super thin needle that should be taken once a week.

Ribavirin is a blister of capsules and the recommended dosage is about 4 tablets per day. The exact dosage varies from person to person, according to the weight and resistance to side-effects that each presents.

DURATION OF TREATMENT

For patients infected with genotypes 2 and 3 the treatment protocols have determined six months of treatment. For those of genotype 1, the duration is 1 year.

SIDE EFFECTS OF REMEDIES (INTERFERON AND RIBAVIRIN)

The drugs have side effects that can vary from person to person.

The stronger medicine; INTERFERON can have a number of these side effects.

Below is a list of possible reactions that CAN happen. This does not mean that they WILL happen.

  • Fatigue
  • Flu-like symptoms: fever, headache, muscle ache
  • Mild anxiety
  • Depression
  • Gastrointestinal symptoms: nausea, diarrhea

 

The fear of the side effects of the medicine, especially INTERFERON, is a big deterrent for someone who needs to start treatment.

For this reason we would like to make the following comments:
Are the effects different for each person?

While this is an often heard comment, in our opinion this response is flawed. And worse than that it leaves the patient completely lost. What happens is that, as there was a variation of reaction among people, what the patient has to observe is the AVERAGE of incidences of each effect. In that way the patient will have a chance to ascertain the possibility of suffering from the listed effects.

When looking at the information regarding the effects that “may” occur, ie, that have already occurred in a universe of thousands and thousands of people note the percentage of incidence.

For example:

1 – Flu symptoms, such as chills, fever, headache, cough, etc. – experienced by 70 to 80% of patients.

2 – Loss of hearing – experienced by 0.0002% of the patients who have already taken the medicine.

I.e.: You are much more likely to have the first symptoms than the second. Your chances of having the two are about as likely as winning the Lottery …

It’s a matter of statistics. And that’s where the law of averages comes in.

Note: If you read any medicine´s printed directions, there are many possible effects. Even a simple aspirin, someone, somewhere, at some time, has suffered some side effect.

LIVER TRANSPLANTATION

There are two kinds of liver transplants – one where only part of the liver is removed and the patient given part of the liver of a donor organ which will be added to the receptor, both segments growing to normal size in a few weeks.

The other kind is done with the complete organ removal and its replacement by a donated organ. This is the most commonly performed today.

CHANCES OF SURVIVAL OF A LIVER TRANSPLANT
AND RESULTING QUALITY OF LIFE

Incredible as it may seem, liver transplantation is not something “out of this world.” The vast majorities of people who undergo this procedure survive the surgery and continue living normally for a period of 5 years with regular check-ups and consultations. Of course survival goes far, far beyond this five year period.

The percentage of success in surgery is around 80 %.

The reports of transplant patients are very favorable.