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ALTERNATIVE DOCTORS

Would like to know if any of you have heard of or tried Dr. Ren's treatment.  He is in New York.  I am looking into different avenues but I have not had success with herbs and not sure if his herbs really help.  I know they are quite expensive and I hate wasting more money.  I am leading towards treatment with TX right about now although I (like everyone here) is so deathly afraid of the TX.  ALT & AST are in the low 200's so it is time to do something.

Any suggestions would be appreciated in helping me make a decission of a lifetime!!!

Niki
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did you check the answers to your post of 5/11?  someone posted a link to a site for you.
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Niki, my suggestion would be to check out Misha Cohen's website at  <a href=http://www.docmisha.com/</a>.  She's a very good friend and a nationally known TCM practitioner who advocates interferon therapy w/ herbal support.   There's a PDF file posted on her site that lists a large number of practitioners, some in NYC, who are trained in her excellent protocol.  Ren I know nothing about, but I have to admit that the language in his ads absolutely turns me off.  I am steeped in TCM and his claim to "cure" this disease is absurd.   Dr. Zhang (who practices in Manhattan) is another story.  I've been on an alt-HCV list for years w/ many people who are on Zhang's protocol and they seem to do very well indeed in managing their disease.  That is, he offers an effective protocol for halting fibrosis and eliminating symptoms but his patients do not seroconvert, nor does he claim that they do.   Unfortunately, we need the harder stuff for that.

So, Chev, you old plant eater, you, out of the closet at last!

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The URL didn't take.  Try this:  www.docmisha.com .
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hi and welcome to the forum!!! sorry you have this disease...but this is a great support forum to many with hep c...

if your alts are in the 200's you really should be more "deathly afraid" of what condition your liver is in right now than the treatment for hep c.  alt/ast in the 200 range means you have some major liver cell death going on right now...it could mean that you even have cirrhosis or liver cancer...I surely pray not. it may just mean that the hepc is in major kill mode on your liver...either way it is time to do something...

you must know herbs will never "kill" the hepatitis c virus...herbs are great for after were done with treatment, to try to do nice things for our liver...but, it is way too nice for the hepc virus!!!...they're mean suckers and need a tough treatment to put them 6 feet under...

so, you must get a biopsy and if your liver is in stage/grade 2 or above, treatment (interferon/ribaviron) is what most drs will suggest, and what most here at this site will suggest...

remember that the side effects from tx is no where near as bad as what can happen with our livers if cirrhosis and liver cancer set in...those are death sentences...with only transplant as a saving method in later stages...then it's steroid use for life...yuk! if you're lucky enough to get a liver...(one out of ten)...

if on your biopsy it registers stage/grade 1 or below then you can do what they call "watchful waiting" and that is simply getting biopsies every 3 years and bloods regularly to watch for further liver damage and then when it occurs then start treatment...you can not "watchfully wait" without a biopsy cause you won't know if you have any time to wait though). also, keep in mind the older you get and the worse shape your liver is in the less likely you will be able to kill the virus...in other words your chances to kill it go down).

but, many do not want more damage to occur at all and will do treatment regardless of what stage they are at... it is impossible to know how fast the virus will move in YOU those 3 years that you're waiting for your next biopsy...everyone has a different way their systems respond to the virus...some aggressively, some slowly...so, it's your gamble...either way...for me it was more of life risk to wait...

but, keep in mind that the side effects from treatment are mostly "manageable" and they are mostly "not life threatening" like the hep c is and some of the problems associated with hep c...(portal hypertension, splenomegally, bleeding varises, asceties, enchalopathy, hernias, pupura, diabetes, gallstones, kidney failure, liver failure, central nervous system problems,liver cancer, etc...).

some sides from tx are serious though like possible eye problems, anemia, and thyroid problems so you must weigh the possible outcomes and decide which is most important to you...if you monitor the treatment with an eye dr and getting blood tests for thyroid or other problems this can help prevent any serious outcomes...

so ask yourself if it is more important to you that you get rid of a virus that can kill you or is it more important to not have side effects and possible consequences of treatment? only you can decide these things...i know we would all like viral eradication with no risks but right now that is not possible. as long as you go into it knowing the facts you can make a wise decision and i hope you will...

i pray for you to have much wisdom in your decision...do some searches on treatment side effects and health problems and conditions associated with cirrhosis, end stage liver disease and hep c...i think you will find out that the treatment side effects are much more tame than the liver disease complications, which are much more scary and can lead to death much more frequently than the treatment for hepc...

hope this helps you in your decision, Sandi
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Mum's the word.
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I am not sure what you mean by you have not had any success with herbs yet. What are your expectation? The only known cure for HCV is treatment with interferon. Some herbs and foods are liver friendsly and many are not but they will not cure HCV. Even if your eating liver friendly foods and taking herbs or vitamins your that are good for you HCV will nor regress, it only progresses. With the help of a healthy liver friendly regime you may keep the rpogression slow enough to not have further damage for a long time but HCV does not get better and it does progress even if at a different rate for each person. This really is a big decision fpr each of us but I would hate to see you lose a lot of money on things that don't cure HCV if that is what you are expecting. LL
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Niki,

Sandi (LvdByGod) makes some excellent points, but I want to offer you a bit of reassurance that your high liver enzymes MIGHT NOT NECESSARILY mean you are on the threshold of cirrhosis.

My ALT was 120 when I was first diagnosed and jumped to over 300 a few months later. That number had more to do with some antibiotics and other prescription meds I was taking for an IVF procedure.  It can take up to three months for liver enzymes to return to a "normal" range after taking certain medications. My ALT today is less than 70 and my biopsy 18 months ago revealed "no significant fibrosis". A follow-up with the FibroSure test last month put me at Stage 0-1.

So, in short, I think you certainly need to be concerned about your liver enzymes, but don't panic and assume the worst.  The biopsy will tell the story of where things really stand.

Good luck to you!
Susan
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yep! susans right about drugs causing high enzymes too so you see you must get a liver biopsy if your really going to know what condition your liver is in from hep c...you may or may not have serious liver damage...only the biopsy can tell you what's going on in there...have you had a biopsy yet? it is really not that bad of a proceedure...your in and out and you can get a lite seditive for it too, which for me made it a breeze...
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