Hepatitis C Community
Coping Spouse
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Coping Spouse

My spouse has Hep C.  He looks terrible, but says he is fine.  His eyes have yellowed.  He is working 16 hour days trying to make some money in the small businesses he started prior to knowing that he was infected with the virus.  (we have no savings and his current clients aren't paying their bills)   We live with a fair amount of stress each day.  I can't sit without crying.  My doctor gave me anti-depressants but these only make me tired, not crying just not funcitioning either.  

His arms are very thin and you can feel the atrophy of the muscles there.  He has lost a lot of weight.  He is not losing weight in his legs as much.  I suspect he has had this virus for about 15 years.  

He stopped drinking beer in December 2000.  I am very worried about him.  We are afraid to go to sleep at night.  I don't know what is coming.  How will the liver failue manifest itself.  Some days his skin seems yellowish.  Back in December he got iritus.  We both know he is ill but I think he is denying it so that he can keep on going, meanwhile we have not talked about what we will do or what will happen if he gets ill.  

How will I know, how long do we have.
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Dear Coping Spouse,

I'm 19 years old and my mother just passed away from Hep. C. a month ago. Its just me and my dad, but I can honestly say that we are holding up. My mother survived for 22 almost 23 years with the virus, but she drank which helped it along. My advice to you is to live every day fully with him and don't let his illness hold you back. Just make sure he doesn't drink alcohol. My mom was completely normal and healthy the day before she just suddenly got sick and we took her to the hospital where they informed us that this was the end. She lived almost a week after she went to the hospital, but it was rather peaceful. If you want to watch for signs, watch for stomach bloating (an abnormal amount that doesn't go away), throwing up blood, if he starts eating ice (its unconscious way to deal with the pain)...other than that I think that you should be ok right now. My mother went through the skinny stage also, but that was a while back. Just keep him healthy and hopefully he'll make it for a long while. :) I know its hard, but just live every day and regret nothing. I hope this helps.

Oh...the process for my mom started with liver failure, then to cirrhosis, and that can then lead to liver cancer, but my mom didn't reach that stage. There is also a chance for a liver transplant. I suggest if you already haven't, find insurance that will cover him with his illness.
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I am sorry to hear about your mom. What a strong girl you are. I wish you a lot of strength to go through these difficult times.

I just wanted to point out that you answered a post from 2001, so I don't think that Coping Spouse will reply.

Marcia
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