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[QUOTE=maypo]I went for my follow up on my liver biopsy and blood work. the result of my biopsy was
Chronic hep C, Geno type 1A, Grade 2 to focal Grade 3, stage 1 to focal stage 2
minimal fatty change less than 5%
no eveidence of streatohepatitis

My blood work showed,
Hep C PCR Quant - 2240000 IU/ML
AST- 71
ALT -81

there are many other tests but I don't know which ones to pay close attention to.

can someone take a look at these labs and let me know how bad this is.

My doctor told me that the treatment is only 30% effective in African Americans. He said he doesn't know why but it seems to work better for whites. He wants to start my treatment April 28th. I have to have a colonoscopy, an eye exam and a psych eval first. What is that all about?

can someone chime in and let me know a little something.

Thanks[/QUOTE]

The prevalence rates of HCV in African Americans is the highest of any demographic group. The prevention and outreach efforts into the African American community has the lowest funding. Would it be too cynical of me to think it might have to do with a large number of uninsured (and disparity in healthcare in general) in that demographic?

The risks of residual problems after treatment may be higher in AA's than in whites, too. This may be due to the propensity of AA patients to have severe and life threatening anemias and other problems (tendancy toward diabetes and high blood pressure) on treatment. The good news is that progression of disease is lower in AA's and there is little evidence for the actual need for treatment IF lifestyle changes are taken very seriously (no alcohol, no drugs, no smoking and vigilence on toxins in the environment) A study of WWII AA veterans whose blood was taken and stored over 50 years ago found that none died of liver disease after all that time and none of them knew they had the virus.

AA males have the highest rates of liver cancer so, treat or don't treat (you do have a choice with those results), be very sure to have regular check ups for it. This risk is not necessarily diminished by interferon treatments. It i diminished for you as you are not anywhere near cirrhosis of the liver. In fact, if you treat and DO NOT respond to the treatment, improvements in fibrosis are not necessarily durable after one year( greater percentage that it is not) and the treatment may cause faster progression than if you did not treat in the first place. That means on the best day, you have a 70% chance of treatment not achieving the SVR you hope to get out of it.

No sign of NASH is fabulous news! It means you control the fat in your diet well or are probably a normal weight person. Excellent.

I am not telling you not to treat. What I do suggest is that you do a lot of research specific to your questions before making this decision. There has been a lot of effort to market the medications to doctors. Jeepers, 30% is a very high SVR number from the ones I have seen. No research has proven that viral load and disease severity are even linked, but that is what the medication does. And remember, clinical trials are not taking just anyone off the street to treat. They take highly selected people and may drop people who show signs of not responding to treatment so they won't show up in the numbers.

So, this is what I have gleaned from the studies I have read over the last 14 years or so. There is also information on the web*site below my name or you can email me if you wish. My name is thanbey at the site below.

I hope this helps,

thanbey





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