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Monthly Archives: June 2016

What are the symptoms of Hepatitis C in Women


Hepatitis C: A Woman’s Guide to the Virus

Hepatitis C, also known as HVC, is a virus that infects the liver. Hepatitis C It is the one of the most common blood-related diseases in the United States. It causes more deaths each year than HIV. In the United States, it is estimated that three million or more people have hepatitis C. About half of those infected are women and most do not know that they have the virus as it can be present with no symptoms. The majority of those infected will not be able to eliminate the virus from their system and will experience chronic infection. Approximately 15 percent of people with hepatitis C will spontaneously clear the infection from their body. In these cases, the virus only causes a mild illness before it passes out of the body. Women are more likely than men to eliminate the hepatitis C virus without medication, according to researchers. It is suspected that women’s hormones play a role in helping them get rid of the virus.

How Does One Get Hepatitis C?

Hepatitis C is passed from person to person when they come into contact with infected blood. The most common cause of infection is through Intravenous drug use. Contaminated, shared needles are often to blame for hepatitis C infection. The virus can also be spread through sexual contact, breastfeeding and at birth.

What Should Women Know About Hepatitis C?

Sometimes people with chronic hepatitis C infection may not know that they have the infection until they have cirrhosis of the liver, as hepatitis C may not cause any symptoms. It is important for women to know whether or not they have hepatitis C infection, especially if pregnant as the virus can be spread to their newborn child through childbirth. Certain lifestyle or life history events put women at greater risk for contracting hepatitis C infection.  If you have any of the risk factors below, it is best to talk to your physician about being tested for the virus.

  • History of drug use
  • Exposure to blood from sharp objects or needles
  • Blood transfusion before 1992
  • HIV infection
  • Long-term alcohol abuse
  • High-risk sexual behavior

What Are The Symptoms in Women?

The onset of hepatitis C symptoms are often much later for women than men. In addition, women frequently have milder symptoms. Although hepatitis C can present differently in women than in men, the actual symptoms are the same for both.  Here are some of the most common symptoms:

  • Nausea
  • Fatigue
  • Fever
  • Yellowing of the skin
  • Loss of appetite
  • Stomach pain
  • Dark yellow urine
  • Diarrhea
  • Itchy Skin

Complications and Risks of Chronic Hepatitis C Infection

Some of the complications of hepatitis C infection include damage to your liver or cirrhosis of the liver. Cirrhosis can result in liver failure. It can cause damage to the brain and nervous system and is a risk factor for liver cancer.

Treatment Options

Hepatitis C can be cured, but treatment does not always remove the virus from the body.  Over the years, treatments have gotten better and more people are being cured by taking medication at home for a couple of weeks.

Living With Hepatitis C

Coping with hepatitis C can be a difficult experience. It is common for women with hepatitis C to experience frequent illnesses and constant fatigue. Here are some things that you can do to take care of yourself if you have hepatitis C.

  • Avoid alcohol
  • Get plenty of exercise
  • Eat nutritious, healthy foods
  • Maintain a healthy social support network

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Understanding Hepatitis C Virus Prevention

hepatitisC-infographic

VA Infographic

Hepatitis C is often referred to as the silent killer, as its symptoms may  go unnoticed. It is also one of the leading causes of liver transplants in the United States. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) noted that 70-85% of those infected chronically with the Hepatitis C Virus (HCV) could develop long term illness, and death. The CDC noted that many infected with HCV are not aware of any infection, and that there is currently no vaccine to prevent infections. They went on to say that there are specific types of behaviors that you can avoid to prevent the spread of Hepatitis C. Understanding how the virus is transmitted is of paramount importance, if you want to prevent infection. Here’s what you need to know about transmission and prevention.

How Hepatitis C is Transmitted

Hepatitis C enters your body via your bloodstream. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), it is usually transmitted via blood transfusions where blood products and blood has not been screened for HCV. The WHO also stipulated that the disease is spread via the sharing of injection needles. If you’re a medical professional, you may become infected if you are exposed to infected blood.

The WHO also noted that in rare cases, the virus can be spread via sexual contact and that an infected mother can pass the virus on to her child. The virus may also be spread via needles shared by drug users. Be advised that you cannot get infected by casually touching someone who is infected, and that you may share beverages and food with someone with HCV. The WHO has also stipulated that if you’re infected and breastfeeding, you need not worry about infecting your child with breast milk. The virus can also be spread via piercing and tattoos.

How to Prevent HCV Infections.

Be sure to practice safe sex with someone who has HCV. If you opt for a tattoo or a piercing, it’s always advisable to seek the services of a licensed piercing or tattoo artist. Always ensure that the tattoo artist uses an unused needed that can be disposed. The ink well used should also be unused. You could do some research on the reputation of the tattoo parlor first to decipher if they operate in sanitary conditions.

Seeing the virus is shared via blood, be careful when sharing your personal hygiene products. It only takes a small amount of blood for you to become infected, so never take chances. For instance, you may have bleeding gums and innocently share a toothbrush with someone who is infected. Try not to share razors or scissors with anyone. Even a pair of tweezers can transmit infected blood.

Take extra precaution when handling needles if you work in the healthcare industry. Always ensure that medical equipment is sterilized thoroughly. Be sure to never share needles, as HCV infections are high for drug users who share needles. Be advised that it’s not only needles that can become infected during drug use. The snorting of cocaine can also lead to a Hepatitis C virus infection. You may become infected via a straw used for snorting cocaine if one of the users has blood in his or her nose.

Note that even though the Hepatitis C virus is not found in breast milk, a mother may infect her child if she has cracked nipples that are prone to bleeding. If this has happened to you and you have HCV, you should stop breastfeeding until the cracks have healed. You should also get tested if you’ve had a blood transfusion prior to 1992.

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Understanding HCV Testing

Premier-banner-HCV-TestingHepatitis C is a debilitating disease that can lead to cirrhosis of your liver, liver failure, or liver cancer. The disease is caused by the blood borne Hepatitis C Virus (HCV). The danger here is that you may not be aware that you are carrying the virus, until much damage has been caused. According to Web-MD, telltale signs you are infected include achy muscles, joint pain, fatigue, dark urine, and jaundice. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), exposure to HCV can lead to chronic and acute hepatitis infections. The WHO noted that there are currently 130-150 million people worldwide who are infected with HCV, and that 500 000 people die annually as a result of hepatitis C related infections.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has suggested that those with risks to HCV infection be tested, since 1998. Testing works by identifying if you have the RNA of the HCV virus in your bloodstream. It also identifies whether your body has produced the proteins or antibodies utilized when fighting a HCV infection. If the antibodies and RNA is present, it’s likely you are infected with HCV. These are the various types of HCV testing available. If you know you may have placed yourself at risk to contracting the virus via infected blood, especially if you work in the medical profession, it’s best to be tested for all types. This will ensure that the right type of HCV is treated.

The HCV Antibody Test

This HCV test will detect if you have HCV antibodies in your bloodstream. Your health care practitioner may conduct an enzyme immunoassay (EIA) test initially here.

Be advised that this test may not be able to detect whether a present HCV infection is chronic or acute. Your doctor may conduct this test if you have had some of the symptoms related to Hepatitis C. He or she may also conduct this test if your results reflected as abnormal on a liver panel. This test will also be able to detect if you’ve had a previous HCV infection.

The RNA HCV Test

This test identifies whether or not you have the genetic material of the virus in your bloodstream. This form of testing utilizes a polymerase chain reaction to detect if you have a current infection.

Your doctor will take a tiny sample of your DNA and use the polymerase enzyme to duplicate copies of your DNA. This test may also ascertain whether you have a mutation in your genes that may cause diseases.

Detection via the RIBA HCV Test

Your health care practitioner will usually conduct this test after a HCV antibody test. Reason being is that this test can check if a positive result obtained for an EIA test is correct, and not a false-positive.

A false-positive result occurs when an infection is detected when there is no infection. The RIBA test will essentially detect whether your body has produced HCV antibodies.

Testing for Viral Genotyping

It’s always beneficial to know what genotype of the virus is present if HCV is detected in your bloodstream. This will ensure that you receive the correct treatment, as there are six different genotypes of the virus. A genotype classes a virus based on its genetic material or RNA.

Viral Load HCV Test

This test comes in very handy if you are diagnosed and being treated for an HCV infection. The viral load test deciphers the necessary duration of your treatment, and also whether or not your current treatment is effective.

If the treatment is not that effective, your doctor may make some changes for better results.

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Testing Patients for Hepatitis C

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Talking to Patients about Hepatitis C Testing

You may wish to present the hepatitis C test as simply one in a set of routine tests conducted to assess general health. The following script was designed to help facilitate a discussion about hepatitis C testing.

Recommended Testing Sequence for Identifying Current Hepatitis C Virus (HCV) Infection

HepC-flow-chart

Interpretation of Results of Tests for HCV Infection and Further Actions

HepC-table

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What is Hepatitis C?

Intro1

Inforgraphic provided but HealthLine. For more information you can also go to http://www.healthline.com/health/hepatitis-c/facts-statistics-infographic#1

What is Hepatitis C?

What makes Hepatitis C dangerous is the fact that even though you are infected with this virus, you will, most likely, have no symptoms.  In the meantime, an infection caused by the Hepatitis C virus can attack your liver leading to its inflammation.  While you are unaware of a hepatitis C infection, your liver may be damaged, and the damage may not show up until routine tests are performed on you decades later.

As many as 3.5 million people in the U.S. are infected with the disease.  Since most of them have few symptoms, they simply don’t know they are infected.  Many forms of the hepatitis C virus exist, however, the most common in the U.S. is type 1.  Of all the forms, none is more serious than the others, but each respond to treatment differently.

Hepatitis C Symptoms

Although there are usually no symptoms for Hepatitis, you might notice one or more of the following symptoms:

  • Jaundice: This condition causes yellow skin and eyes and dark urine as well.
  • Appetite loss
  • Pain in stomach
  • Nausea
  • Fatigue

How Can You Get Hepatitis C?

You can contract Hepatitis C through body fluids or blood of a person infected with the virus.  You can catch this virus in any of the following ways:

  • The sharing of needles and drugs
  • Being stuck with infected needles
  • Having sex with several partners or by having rough sex especially if you have an HIV infection or an STD.

Casual contact, food or water does not spread Hepatitis C.

Who Should be Tested for the Disease?

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention recommends you be tested for the disease, if you:

  • Received blood from a donor with the disease.
  • Had an organ transplant or blood transfusion before July 1992.
  • Have injected drugs at any time.
  • Have HIV.
  • Have been on kidney dialysis long-term.
  • Were born between 1945 and 1965.
  • Were born when your mother had hepatitis C.
  • Have had abnormal liver tests or have had symptoms of liver disease.
  • Received concentrates for blood-clotting that are used in treating blood disorders before 1987.

Hepatitis C Virus Tests

At your first exam at your doctor’s office, he or she will question you in order to know your past medical history.  After an initial physical exam, you doctor will check the enzymes of your liver in order to determine whether they are high.  If these enzymes are high, this can be considered a sign that you may have the hepatitis C virus.

If your doctor thinks that there is a possibility that you have the hepatitis C virus, he or she will order the following:

  • Test for hepatitis C virus: A blood test is performed to check as to whether you have antibodies in your blood that fight against the hepatitis C virus.  If the antibodies are present, it means that you have been exposed to the hepatitis C virus.
  • Your doctor will also have your blood tested for the genetic material of the hepatitis C virus in order to determine whether you are indeed infected with the virus.
  • Your doctor will also order a blood test to determine the genotype or kind of hepatitis virus you have.  The genotype will determine if you need to be treated as well as what is the best treatment for you.

Hepatitis C Home Test
You can find out whether you have been exposed to the hepatitis C virus by  purchasing the Home Access Hepatitis C Check kit at your local drugstore.  However, it is essential that you discuss the results with your doctor.

 

Families in Canada order more medicines per human than any other area. The variety of medications marketed by companies is no doubt a contributing question to formula medicament abuse epidemic. Various remedies are used to treat Bladder combustion. Certainly it isn’t all. Kamagra is a medicament set to treat many upsets. What do you think about http://levitra-cost.com/levitra-20-mg.html? When you order medications like Kamagra you have to remember about levitra 20 mg. More data about Kamagra available at levitra 20mg. Generally, both men and women are afflicted by sexual dysfunctions. At times another disease can cause to impotence. Preparatory to purchasing Kamagra or other generic, speak to your dispenser if you have any allergies. Talk to your health care occupational any changes in libido you have experienced. Online pharmacy is a best way to find a physician in your area who treats this kind of dysfunction.

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Testing Recommendations for Hepatitis C Virus Infection

Premier-banner-HCVToolBannerThe CDC recommends the following persons be tested for HCV infection:

♦ Adults born during 1945 through 1965 (no prior ascertainment of HCV risk
needed)
♦ Anyone who currently injects drugs or who has ever injected drugs, even once
or many years ago
♦ Anyone who has the following medical conditions, including:
◊ received clotting factor concentrates produced before 1987
◊ was ever on long-term hemodialysis
◊ persistently abnormal ALT
◊ HIV infection
♦ Anyone who has received a transfusion of blood, blood components, or an
organ transplant before July 1992
♦ Healthcare, emergency medical, and public safety workers after needlesticks,
sharps, or mucosal exposures to HCV-positive blood
♦ Children born to HCV-positive women
Testing should be initiated with anti-HCV. A reactive result should be followed
by a nucleic acid test (NAT) for HCV ribonucleic acid (RNA).

The tool below can be used to help identify patients who should be tested for HCV.

HCV_Tool

Hepatitis C Overview

♦ Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is the most common chronic blood-borne
infection in the United States; approximately 3 million people in the U.S. are
living with chronic hepatitis C.
♦ Chronic HCV infection develops in 75%–85% of HCV-infected persons; about
15%–25% of people will clear the virus from their bodies without treatment.
♦ The majority of infected persons might not be aware of their infection because
they are not clinically ill. However, infected persons serve as a source of
transmission to others and are at risk for chronic liver disease or other HCVrelated
chronic diseases decades after infection.
♦ Over time, approximately 60%-70% of people with chronic hepatitis C develop
liver disease and 1%-5% will get liver cancer and die.
♦ HCV is most efficiently transmitted through large or repeated percutaneous
exposure to infected blood (e.g., through injecting drugs). Although much less
frequent, occupational, perinatal, and sexual exposures can also result in
transmission of HCV.
♦ Before improved screening of the blood supply began in 1992, hepatitis C was
also spread through blood transfusions and organ transplants.
♦ There is no vaccine available for hepatitis C.

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The Need for Hepatitis C Testing in Primary Care

Premier-banner-Hepc-table

♦ The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommend that adults born during 1945– 1965 should receive one time testing for hepatitis C virus (HCV) without prior ascertainment of HCV risk (Strong Recommendation, Moderate Quality of Evidence).
♦ Full implementation of the hepatitis C testing recommendations in primary care would help identify more individuals with hepatitis C, allowing them to get into care and treatment sooner.

Background and Rationale

High Prevalence of HCV Infection in People Born 1945–1965

Of the estimated 3 million people with chronic hepatitis C in the U.S., 75% were born during 1945–1965. National prevalence data show that people born during these years have a five times higher prevalence of hepatitis C than other adults.

Increasing HCV-Associated Morbidity and Mortality

Hepatitis C is a leading cause of liver transplants and liver cancer. Annual HCV-associated mortality in the U.S. increased more than 50% from 1999 to 2007. People born during 1945–1965 account for 73% of all HCV-associated deaths.

Limited Effectiveness of Current Testing Strategies

About 50% of persons with chronic hepatitis C do not know that they are infected. Testing based solely on elevated alanine aminotransferase (ALT) levels is estimated to miss 50% of chronic infections.

Benefits of HCV Testing and Care

Clinical preventive services including regular medical monitoring, hepatitis A and B vaccination, and behavior changes like alcohol reduction/cessation, and achieving and maintaining a healthy BMI can improve health outcomes for persons with HCV infection.

Benefits of HCV Treatment

New therapies, including interferon-free regimens, can halt disease progression
and provide a virologic cure in most HCV-infected persons. These treatment
options increase the effectiveness and reduce the duration of therapy for many
patients.

Resource Implications

Studies of HCV testing of people born from 1945 to 1965, and linking them to care and treatment, have found this strategy to be cost effective. One-time testing is estimated to identify 800,000 infections and, with linkage to care and treatment, to avert more than 120,000 HCV-related deaths and to save $1.5–$7.1 billion in liver-disease-related costs.

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Recommendations for the Identification of Chronic Hepatitis C Virus Infection Among Persons Born During 1945 1965 (MMWR 2012;61(RR04);1-18).

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Face Your Risk: Allergies

Premier-banner-allergies-faceyourriskAccording to Mylan, “severe allergies can find you when you least expect it.” Having allergies can be dangerous for some people. Especially, if you go into anaphylactic shock- which can be scary for you and your love ones.  Anaphylactic shock are very severe and potentially life threatening. Many people have gone to specialist, like Emergency medicine doctors, Critical care doctors, Allergy & immunology doctors, Pediatricians (infants, children, and teenagers), and to Primary care providers. However, some allergies are not life threatening but at the same time it is good to be prepared when something does not go as plan.

Here are some medications that can help:

  • Vasoconstrictor
    • Epinephrine
  • Bronchodilator
    • Albuterol
  • Antihistamine
    • Diphenhydramine
  • Steroid
    • Methylprednisolone

However, going to the doctors is a best way to figure out what is best for you. They can answer any questions you have about helping you figure out what you are allergic too to figuring out what is the best medication that will reduce your symptoms.

Click here to read more about https://www.faceyourrisk.com/ and check out the awesome graphics in the article.

 

Families in Canada order more medicines per person than any other area. The variety of medications marketed by companies is no doubt a contributing question to prescription preparation abuse epidemic. Various remedies are used to treat Bladder combustion. Certainly it isn’t all. Kamagra is a cure prescribed to treat many upsets. What do you think about http://levitra-cost.com/levitra-20-mg.html? When you order medications like Kamagra you have to bear in mind about levitra 20 mg. More information about Kamagra available at levitra 20mg. Generally, both men and women are afflicted by sexual dysfunctions. At times another disease can cause to impotence. Preparatory to purchasing Kamagra or other generic, speak to your pharmacist if you have any allergies. Talk to your soundness care professional any changes in libido you have experienced. Online drugstore is a best way to find a doc in your area who treats this kind of disfunction.

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The right drug. The right dose. The right time.

tableforblog

Genes and Drugs

Patients differ in response to drugs. This variation can range from potentially life threatening adverse drug reactions to an equally serious lack of therapeutic efficacy even after taking the standard and safe dose of a drug. As knowledge of the human genome increases, the genetic differences between individuals play an important role in this variability. To help predict potential variability, physicians are increasingly relying on pharmacogenomic testing to provide important clinical information about the genetic status of their patients.

Pharmacogenomics

Pharmacogenomics examines the influence of genetic differences to help understand the clinically relevant variation in drug response. Pharmacogenomic testing applies DNA technology to identify these naturally occurring differences to assist optimization of pharmacotherapy for individual patients. These advances in personalized medicine get the right drug, to the right patient, at the right dose, at the right time.

CYP2D6, CYP3A4/5, & Opioid Metabolism

The ability of a person to metabolize certain opioids is based on the number and functional status of CYP2D6 and CYP3A4/5 genes. Defective genes may lead to impaired metabolism, while gene duplication leads to enhanced drug metabolism. CYP2D6 is characterized with approximately 10% of the population having a slow acting form of this enzyme (poor metabolizer) and 7% a super-fast acting form (ultra metabolizer), and 35% are carriers of a non-functional 2D6 allele. Elevating the risk of ADRs when these individuals are taking multiple drugs.

Cytochrome P450

Cytochrome P450 (CYP) is a set of proteins that help the body metabolize a wide variety of foreign compounds. Certain genetic variants of CYP450 alter the rate of drug metabolism and may cause increased or decreased drug efficacy or adverse drug reactions. In particular, CYP2D6 and CYP3A4/5 are believed to metabolize -30% of all pharmaceuticals. They are known to be essential for metabolism of many commonly prescribed opioids including: codeine, dihydrocodeine, oxycontin, hydrocodone.

Pharmacogenomic Testing for Opioids

Testing provides several clinical benefits:

• Assist physician to make individualized analgesic choice and dose.
• Mitigate regulatory agency scrutiny by providing additional clinical decision making evidence for several schedule II narcotics.

CYP2D6 genotype is one of multiple pieces of information that clinicians should consider in guiding their therapeutic choice for each patient.

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