My wife told me to join this and start educating myself. I have Hep C. I went to hear the results of my liver biopsy yesterday. I was told my livers fibrosis was at 88, and interferon treatment is only about 25% effective. My Dr. is saying between stage 2-3, but he is more inline to determine Stage 3. He didnt give me any medication or treatment options, I am not educated enough about this disease to ask the right questions. What is out there for me and what should I have asked. My wife has asked for a second opinion to give us time to educate and determine what questions to ask. Can anyone enlighten me?.
There are a new class of drugs available that significantly increase the odds of successful treatment. They are Protease Inhibitors and you can find a wealth of information at the HCV site above.
I'm suspicious of a doctor that says that interferon and ribavirin is 25% effective. It's just under 50% for genotype 1 and higher for genotypes 2 & 3.
I frankly don't know what 88 fibrosis refers to. I haven't seen fibrosis describe like that. Stage 2 would probably be considered moderate fibrosis and stage 3 advanced fibrosis. The thing about biopsies is that pathologists (the doctor who reads the slides and writes the report) don't always agree and it is not uncommon to have pathologists a stage apart when assessing liver damage from biopsy slides. So, it appears as though you might be a stage 2 or a stage 3. As a general rule it is easier to successfully treat patients with less advanced fibrosis so it's often wise to start sooner rather than later. But, both stage 2 and 3 have been treated successfully so please, do not panic. The difficulty is really once you reach cirrhosis which is stage 4 and you don't appear to be there yet.
In the meantime it is prudent to avoid all alcohol because alcohol can increase the rate of fibrosis progression.
Visit the link above and spend some time just reading the questions and responses. Once you get a feel for the place ask whatever you want to ask and you'll get invaluable information.
Good luck and keep your spirits up. This is a disease which you can overcome.
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