My mom, who is 70 something, my older brother and I all have Hep C. None of us ever had any symptoms and each were diagnosed as a result of other testing. Long story short, when I was about 7 years old (which was 40 years ago), some family friends came to visit. About a week later, we got a call that one of the friend's kids had come down w/hep and my whole family had to get a shot. I believe the injection was called gamma globin. I'm just wondering, since 3 people in my immediate family, all have Hep C, is there any way that getting exposed and receiving an injection 40 years ago could have pre-disposed us to Hep C. I know Hep C wasn't even "discovered" until 1980 something, but how do the researchers know Hep C wasn't around 40 years ago?
On the other hand, my mom worked in a hospital where she could have been exposed at some point and my brother and I both led lifestyles for a period of time that would have exposed us also, so it is not inconceivable that the 3 of us have Hep C from different sources.
I just think it is so weird that 3 members of my immediate family have it. Neither my mom or my brother have treated for Hep C and neither one of them even know, or want to know, what genotype they are. My mom's VL and ALT/AST are very high, however, but she has absolutely no symptoms and she was a very heavy drinker in her lifetime and still drinks at least one glass of wine every night. My brother has never done VL testing. He was an alcoholic but has been sober for 15 years now.
Hep C wasn't <i>discovered</i> in 1980. They knew about non-A non-B before that but they weren't sure what it was or how to test for it. I know that back in 1975 they were wondering if that was what I had. <ul>The Hepatitis Handbook</ul> talks about HepC being around during WW2.
At any rate, unless you can determine that you all have the same genotype, there's no way of knowing if you shared the same path of exposure.
I also had a gammaglobulin (it was for HepB back in 1971) and wonder if that could be how I got it. The other possibility was a needle stick around 1960-61 (a nurse who jabbed herself and then me when trying to give me a shot when I was a little kid).
Just to give a quick background on me...
I am unable to take interferon due to my heart condition and I am 1b with vl of 764,000 as of 8/31/04. It was 1,370,000 last January 2004. My Dr. stated to me that he will have me on a treatment in 3-5 years and will cure me then. (if I can take the
extra-hepatic manifestations that long LOL)
All other liver tests and functions are normal. I also had HBV which I cleared on my on, and HAV.
I just found out yesterday that my Genotype is 1b (unfortunately) so I have been doing a lot of research on web and did come across a couple of interesting articles.(I didn't save any of the links though and remember, I read this on the net so take it as you will)
First, I remember reading yesterday that HCV has been around since the 1890s. (No, I can't prove it and who knows if it is true or not) Also AntiD or Rho-gam (Shots given for RH negative mothers) were said to have caused HBV. The article I read states that was actually HCV -1b- that was contracted from the injection not HBV. This study was done with a group of Irish women who were HBV reactive at the time (after their shots) and then years down the road had HCV (1b) not HBV.
I found that interesting. The gamma globulin shots were given years ago when anyone came in contact with someone with HAV. Could they have been given if someone came into contact with HBV or HCV?--Don't know but it's possible.
The practice of sterilization back then is not what it is now and who knows how we contracted it. (For everyone that can't pinpoint a mode) I also read that 1b's are the highest group that can't pinpoint a mode of infection. 40-50 years ago when a baby was born, and their blood counts were low they would do what was called "A mini transfusion" and many adults today contracted HCV (1b) that way. Not sure about the other genotypes though. Like I said, I read this on the net and have no idea if it is concrete or just a theory. I do find your question interesting though, and if your Mom and brother would get genotyped perhaps that would answer part of your transmission question.
Just a thought
One more thing...
re: Milk Thistle-It has been shown that it does lower Vl's but it will not cure Hepatitis, so...
Is it wise to take it during tx and then to check your vl? Could your vl show to be lower than it actually is and is it being masked? The upside is that Milk Thistle does keep medicines in your system longer and if taken with tx, will it keep the interferon in your system longer? Are the sides worse though?
Those are just a couple of the many questions I have rolling round in my head LOL
I hope everyone has a pain free day
Please don't make me come over the pond and straighten you out! I know your concentration efforts have returned. Go sit in your garden with your girls and collect your thoughts. Then get back with us. (Truthfully, I love every one of your posts and you never fail to make me smile. I wish we would "see" more of you.)
To tell you the truth the kind of stuff in this thread i find really interesting but i freaks me out a bit. Not to say that
amongst our concerns/curiosity there isn't some factual stuff but it affects me like a feather dragged across my already biiirubined up itchy skin. Please dont thump me i would just cry and then we would both end up feeling bad.
Don't know about the 1890's, but I do remember reading about a researcher who tested blood samples taken from soldiers on duty in Korea in the 1950's and found HCV. So theoretically, 40 years is possible.
I'd like to say more, but it took me 10 minutes to type and correct these few words, so I'm going to bed.
Wow,,,that is quite a story. I'm with you as it is kinda weird that 3 people from same family each caught somewhere else but unless they ever did genotype,,,I guess you wouldn't know. It could possibly be that you all had 40 years and is amazing your mom or brother aren't having any problems at all? Or at least I gather,,,that they didn't have any symptoms? Are they supportive of you going through tx and has this made them want to give it a try or they just don't worry about it?
Very interesting post. I remember receiving gamma globulin shots a couple of times when I was in the service. I was in an airborne unit and we had too be ready to deploy anywhere in the world within 24 hours hence all the shots. They lost my shot records a couple of times so I received multiples of everything for every third world possibility. Plague, cholera, yellow fever, typhoid, swine flu, dengue fever,gamma globulin, etc. Made going on alert a lovely process.
I never really thought about the shots being a possible vector.
I did wonder about the shot method (airgun) after reading some posts on the net mentioning that method but I hadn't really considered the vaccines themselves.
Oh well, I guess I'll never know. I'm a 2b by the way.
Peace - Gulfcoast
Interesting...I also have geno 1b. Hmmm... I've always been suspicious of that gamma globulin. It was for Hep B and I got it as a preventative measure (my mother insisted) before I went to see my father in the middle east. I think she thought it was food borne (the hep B that is). Hmmm again...
Childhood shots given many years ago were for the most part not done with the sterilization methods we have today. Does anyone remember standing in line at the health dept. or at the school nurse waiting to get our shots/and or our polio drink from those little white cups and then check for head lice with that tongue depressor? Did they use a new syringe each time? I don't know, I wasn't looking. I was too scared! Remember being sick at school and the nurse would put you on the sticky red couch/bed thing and pull a glass mercury thermometer out of the little glass cup and shake it and stick it under your tongue? Alcohol was the big sterilization method years ago. (then when the nurse wasn't looking we'd stick it in the radiator to heat it up so we could go home LMAO) One day the nurse wouldn't let me go home, I guess she didn't believe I had a 106 temp LMAO
Anyway, the more I think back over the years, the more ways I see that I could have contracted it. Dentists, Doctors, surgeries, or just at the hospital ER etc...It really is an enigma for a lot of us.
Analysis of genetic diversity and sampling of the presence in the human population indicates that the hepatitis C virus (HCV) first infected human beings somewhere in the Far East, anything from 200 to 1500 years ago. Unlike hepatitis B, HCV is an unstable RNA virus with ongoing mutational properties;
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