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Avatar universal

Scared?

Hi All,
I'm new.  Went for annual physical. ALT came back 48. all other blood work was fine. Doc did additional liver work. HCV antibody came back positive. (ALT was back down to 24). Went back again to find out if virus is present and if so, what the viral load is, and also geno type. Lab said results will take 10 days. I am so freaked out. I felt fine before my physical. now I am paralyzed with fear. My biggest fear is that I could have passed this on to my daughter during birth.  She is 12. Do you all stay scared?
39 Responses
Avatar universal
15-50% of everyone infected with hepatitis c will clear the virus on their own. What they're left with is the antibody but no virus. With no virus, they don't have hep c and can't pass the disease along to others. Hopefully, you'll be in that 15-50%. It's hard not to be scared -- but just try and be patient and wait for the test results. And please let us know what you find out.

-- Jim
86075 tn?1238115091
hey so am I!!!! please, please avoid what I did and don't get overly freaked out over this diagnosis, everyone is different but I've had maybe over 30 years and I'm still okay...when I first was diagnosed I was in great shape yet just the fact that I had this scared the beejeebies out of me and I wasted a whole year freaking out about it (which is about par for the course I soon found out) youre bloodwork already doesn't sound too bad,

please give us your stats: age, how long do you think you have had this? when do you think you were exposed? when the bloodwork comes back, post it and you'll get many responses from very knowledgable people, though remember, none of us are docs...don't freak out though, the thought of it is usually worse than the case of it...take things step by step, educate yourself, go to Janis and Friends site and read up on it...

make sure not to pay attention to all the anecdotes, in terms of applying it to YOUR particular case, cause we are all different and just because you hear what sounds like a nightmare from one person doesn't necessarily mean that applies to YOUR case, remember that while you are educating yourself, this disease is all over the map in terms of how it affects people...

and remember, statistically speaking, there is little chance that you passed it on to your child, though of course get all the testing... there is a lot to learn, and oddly enough, the more you learn, the less scary it is, though of course no one wants to have this...it'll be okay, I assure you...you have options...
Avatar universal
She hasn't been diagnosed with hep c yet. Just has the antibodies.
86075 tn?1238115091
oooops...maybe need some green tea to wake me up....
Avatar universal
You all have given me some relieve already and I thank you.   I'm 42 year old female. I assume I contracted this between the ages of 15 - 17. Roughly about 27 years ago.  I have been in good physcial health over the years. I mountain bike and power walk almost daily. I always get CBC when I get my annual physcial, and the results have always been normal. All the stuff I've been reading online with the exception of this site has freaked me out.
Avatar universal
Welcome, I have a fear of this virus and I'm of 7 of 48 weeks of tx(treatment). Before I started tx , I worried dailey for 16 years but now since strting the tx I feel better , I'm doing something about it. After you get your pcr results you should have a bx (biopsy) done to see if what or if the virus is damaging your liver. As far as your daughter is concerned you can have a qualative test done to see if she is hcv posative. I too wondered if my daughters contracted the virus but had the test done on them and thank God they tested neg. when the qualative blood test was done on them. Try not to worry the chances of her catching this is small. This test was also done on my wife with neg results. Post here , there are very knowlegable people here that will support you through this . It's natural to be scared but please try not to worry!

Dyce
Avatar universal
Forsee said oooops...maybe need some green tea to wake me up...
----------------------
How about some Roibios? Most people seem to tolerate it well, but one member reported.... ;)

============
Dog,

A biopsy is good adivce but only of course if it turns out that you indeed have hepatitis c. You may not. I wouldn't get too worked up until your test results are in.

-- Jim

Avatar universal
Thanks....I should have said I was exposed instead of contracted (since I don't know if I have the virus). I'm trying to stay positive. I think this site will be my life saver.  The anitbody blood test only took two days to come back.  Is it normal for the virus blood work to take 10 days?
Avatar universal
Well we all freaked out when we first heard we had it or found out our enzymes were elevated I can guarantee you that much. But...if you are going to have to get any disease this is NOT as bad as most of them out there.

It is a VERY slow progressing disease (I've personally had it for over 25 years and NEVER knew until I went for a physical this YEAR). The treatment isn't FUN but for the most part it IS doable and depending on what type you have (genotype) there are 50% - 80% cure rates.  Pretty good odds right?  

Plus...the truly GREAT thing about having it - hanging out in here with these WONDERFUL people who have the patience and education to teach us, ask all of our ridiculous questions and then make us laugh at ourselves.

Try not to freak until you know if you even HAVE it. A 48 is not that bad an Alt or Ast.  Mine were in the 200s when I was diagnosed and I really thought I was going to just drop dead and had already infected everyone I knew. RAN the kids down to get tested. Threw out everything in the house.

Found out once again I jumped the gun - everybody was FINE.

Best ofluck on the test results. With a 20% chance that you don't even have it....that's pretty decent. If you DO - it is NOT the end of the world. Not at all.
Avatar universal
hi,

sorry you are going through the misery of waiting, I think that all here can empathise with you there. There is the chance that you could have cleared the virus on your own, as Jim says, so try and take it easy til you know for sure.

Our stats sound similar, same age, I contracted the virus around age 15, and I only found out last year. I have always been healthy and well, and have minimal damage. My biggest fear was my kids, 11, 7 and 3, I was so sure that I would have passed it to them, but I had them tested and they are all negative, so again, try not to get too worried about this, and if you do turn out to be positive there is only a small chance that you will have passed it on.

My PCR tests seem to take around 10 days here in the UK, so maybe this is standard.

All the best + take care

xx
Avatar universal
Yup about ten days seems standard everywhere.

This whole disease is one big giant constant waiting game for us isn't it?

Wait for CBC.  Wait for geno and V/L.  Wait for 4 week PCR. Wait for 12 week. Wait for 24. Wait for more CBCs to find out if the Epo is working. on and on and on.

If anything its taught me patience I got to say that!
86075 tn?1238115091
Doglover: yes, I know it sounds really hard, but you might be plesantly surprised! and if you do have it, remember, it's not a death sentence to the vast, vast majority of people...I know that's hard to process, but fear is much worse then circumstance, almost always...

Jim: Just for your benefit, dug out that box of Roobiboos, (how do you spell that dang tea anyway?) and it was fine, no speedy feeling, just a tad more "alert." See, once again, I psycked myself out over nothin...gonna post some recent studies....the way I look at it, some of these things are in my regimen, and it seems they do help the immune system in some way, and they are just finding out how...anyway, hope youre well!!!

Ginger, pepper treat difficult cancers - Yahoo! News
http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20060404/hl_nm/cancer_spices_dc_1

Vitamins plus Ibuprofen may ward off Alzheimer's - Yahoo! News
http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20060407/hl_nm/vitamins_alzheimers_dc_1

Ginger an Ovarian Cancer Killer - Yahoo! News
http://news.yahoo.com/s/hsn/20060406/hl_hsn/gingeranovariancancerkiller

Mice Offer Insight Into New Pain Drugs - Yahoo! News
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20060406/ap_on_he_me/pain_study_1

Partial liver comparable to whole-liver transplant - Yahoo! News
http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20060405/hl_nm/liver_transplant_dc_1

Cinnamon, Cloves May Spice Up Health - Yahoo! News
http://news.yahoo.com/s/hsn/20060405/hl_hsn/cinnamonclovesmayspiceuphealth

Vitamin D May Cut Breast Cancer Risk - Yahoo! News
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20060404/ap_on_he_me/vitamin_d_breast_cancer_1
87972 tn?1322661239
Doglover said
119874 tn?1189755829
I'm like almost everyone else.  decades passed.  i was healthy, then found out about hepc.  Even if you do have it, you don't have to freak out.  Your liver enzymes suggest that your liver is working just fine for now.  

I HAD TWO CHILDREN before I found out about this.  One of the worst things was getting them tested but they were fine.  It's rare to pass this on to your babies.  

Hang on until you know what's what.  Your doctor sounds very thorough in ordering all those tests.  That's good.
Avatar universal
All of us mom's worry about the same thing - our kids. I was convinced my oldest (daughter) MUST have gotten it from grabbing my razors in the shower. Just CONVINCED of it. Passing it via birth is RARE but not impossible. We have a member in here who got it that way and he's very young now ... but he would be the first to tell you it's REALLY uncommon and he already used up that percentage so your kids are FINE :)

Got to go with the odds right? And if he already has it...it's therefore used up.

:)

Avatar universal
R000BIOS????Not sure if it's a good idea to drink a tea that nobody can spell.

Anyway, thanks for the vito links. Right now, I'm trying to wean myself off ALL drugs and compensate with diet, exercise, meditation and a few supplements. In fact, haven't had a pill other than vitamins or supplements in four days.

Right now I'm playing it conservative with Centrum Silver for basic vitamin needs; Probionics for digestion and GERD; Digestive enzymes for digestion and GERD; Omega 3 for general health. May try a little zinc (controversial) and saw palmetto (also iffy) for my prostate. I don't like to add too many things at once because then you can't tell what is doing what and right now my two major concerns are GERD (and it's upper respiratory/sinus offshoots) and prostate. Not to mention my cholesterol which probably will require a statin drug as soon as I feel well enough to start introducing more sh*t into my body.

Diet has changed dramatically. On treatment I ate twice a day with no snacks. Typical bkfast -- eggwhites and bacon, homefries, toast and butter. Typical dinner -- ham and cheese sandwhich with mayo, oven brown potatoes and ice cream.

Yesterday: bfast: oatmeal, mango, buffalo probionic yogurt and fibre bar. Lunch: Bok Choy, white meat chicken and brown rice; Dinner -- Clear fish and tofu soup; Yakotori (chicken) w/o any sauce, white rice (didn't have brown) and one row tekamaki w/o the wasabai. Snacks: Snacks: almonds, walnuts, organic prunes, fibre bars. Avoiding coffee & tea (caff and decaf), tomatoe products, chocolate, any raw salads (for now) and pretty much wheat and milk products (except yogurt)>I should be able to keep this diet up for at least another three days. LOL. But seriously, the idea is to compensate for the drugs I'm stopping with a healthier lifestyle because frankly the drugs for blood pressure, prostate and GERD are making me sick. If this doesn't work I can always go back to them, but I'd much prefer this route.

-- Jim
Avatar universal
this entire experience has been one big scare to me.  I'm always worrying about something.  Will I clear the virus?  Will it come back?  will I have to retreat?  Will the side effects kick my butt?

Try and take one day at a time.  When I first found out I have hep c, I was completely floored and it took me along time to accept it.  Who knows?  maybe your body will have cleared the virus all on it's own.  I hope that is the case for you.
86075 tn?1238115091
natch I like youre diet...sure youre not from LA? ha ha! might try some cinnamon and blueberries on youre oatmeal in the morning, I do lots of cinnamon, not only do they think it might help cholesterol, but it's good for glucose leveling...

also good for the same things is aloe vera juice, big proponent of aloe vera juice, great for the skin of course, also great for cholesterol, wonderful for digestion and elimination, really good for gerd, also, once you want to of course, I had gerd once every so ofen, till I used this stuff...

I could see an immediate difference, which I didn't see with anything else...it's called Betaine HCI with Pepsin...Vitamin Shoppe has it and you get tons of it for really cheap, like 12 bucks, it's made from sugar beets, that's all...they've been using it in Europe for generations...once I started using it I've had gerd, (or that disgusting thing where it feels like your stomach is coming up through your throat) maybe once...I could tell it worked immediately...I can't recommend it enough...guess it causes the acids that we actually need to digest...but of course, with my info, take what you need and leave the rest behind!!!
Avatar universal
You got some great and informative advice here. Scared? we all were and are but one of the most important things I've learned here is to be patient and wait for results. Best thing to do is get some info like you are doing here, and go to the janice site. I'm a single dad of a 14 yro and did a lot of worrying in the beginning about whether I may have passed it to his Mom and if he got it from her or from me from some cut or something while I was raising him. Now I know better than to worry before I have at least basic knowledge.
In the meantime the results are already whatever they are. You have no control over that and can't change it. Try not to sit worrying and being afraid, that really won't help. Those of us that do have hep c and are treating or preparing for treatment often have milestones along the way to go through. We can worry ourselves right out of good health or make a decision to be prepared and knowledgeable and mentally prepared about options as we go along for the times that results just aren't what we hoped for.
Remember you don't have the results back to you yet. You may have little or nothing to face. Just concentrate on what you can do for today. Set a small block of time aside each day, If you want...allot maybe 15 min to worry, 20 minutes or more to find things out about hep and the liver. Then tell yourself you spent enough time on worry and did all you could in that arena for the day, then spend the rest of the day taking care of life as usual. Before you know it the results will be back and you take it from there.
You'd be amazed what some of the people here have and are facing and get through. Post and read a lot here, this place does more to quell fear than you can imagine.
Be Well,
don
86075 tn?1238115091
don't want to give you the wrong idea, my diet isn't quite as stringent as yours, but youre de-toxing I guess, which is a great idea...those poisons supposedly gather in fatty tissues and joints, etc..and they'll take awhile to say bye bye...course I'm beating a dead horse here, but if you want to avoid dairy, with a lot of the same good taste, try goat yogurt and goat milk, there's even goat ice cream...I do smoothies with goat yogurt, goat milk, blueberries, strawberries (a little bit of goat milk protein powder  named Goatein, I had to cut back cause it was making me gain weight like an Orca) a little bit of honey and it's really, really good...

now to my white fish in fennel sauce with some chutney chicken salad...
86075 tn?1238115091
hey, I do that allotment to worry thing too, trouble is, I'm blocking out the afternoons, mornings, etc...ha ha! good to see you here friend, always with the wise advice...
Avatar universal
Jim, is it possible for the lab that tests the nations blood supplies to test blood and think it just has the anti-bodies of hep C but that the blood really is positive for hep C.  Do mistakes like that ever happen with the safe guards they have in place today.

Beagle
Avatar universal
Forsee,

Thanks for the suggestions! Hopefully, when I stablize some, I can start trying new things one at a time. Tonight, I overdid it with the healthy stuff -- to much -- had the fish, tofu broth again with an order of steamed soba noodles thrown in -- then an order of steamed edamane plus an Uni sashimi and then a row of tekamaki. Just came home and chased the whole thing down with a banana walnut fiber bar (getting addicted here) and some leftover organic prunes from yesterday. Maybe I'd better reach for some tums or maybe one Pepcid AC is in order. As you know, trying to wean off two 40mg Nexium's a day.

Question. I read a lot about avoiding dairy except for Yogurt. But isn't yogurt dairy, even if it's made from goat's milk or buffalo milk? Is goat cheese considered dairy? Please educate me. Currently, I've been having some Yogurt each day -- it's greek but I'll check if it's from cow or goat. Yesterday I had some buffalo yogurt with probiotics in it.

I don't plan on being this strict forever, but I'm trying to get off the da*n Nexium plus the prostate meds. Also, hoping the diet will help the psoriasis, not to mention my general health, including the heart. Walked by a pizza place today and sighed. But if it's between not eating pizza and staying hooked on Nexium, I'll do without the pizza.

---------------------------------------------------
BB asks:Jim, is it possible for the lab that tests the nations blood supplies to test blood and think it just has the anti-bodies of hep C but that the blood really is positive for hep C. Do mistakes like that ever happen with the safe guards they have in place today.

I'm not sure if you're saying what you mean, or I'm not reading it right. If a lab thinks it has the anti-bodies for hepa c, the blood may or not be positive for hep c. This would require another test, for example a PCR. Different, but related, I recently read that a certain percent of folks can be antibody negative but PCR positive.

For this reason, those at very high risk would probably be smart to go the extra step and do the PCR in addition to the antibody test. Regarding mistakes in general -- yes, they do happen and probably more frequently with some tests than others. For this reason, a lot of doctors won't make major treatment decisions without re-testing -- especially if they get a positive after the patient goes non-detectible.

Hopefully, I've answered your question but if not, please let me know. BTW very happy your hgb seems to have stablized. You sound like you're handling the drop very well so hopefully you won't need that second transfusion.

-- Jim
Avatar universal
Tonight, I overdid it with the healthy stuff -- to much -- had the fish, tofu broth again with an order of steamed soba noodles thrown in -- then an order of steamed edamane plus an Uni sashimi and then a row of tekamaki. Just came home and chased the whole thing down with a banana walnut fiber bar (getting addicted here) and some leftover organic prunes from yesterday.

Your starting to scare me jim.
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