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confidentiality

I am 55 years old lpn dx 2 years ago hcv 1a bx results stg1 mild inflammation I have since moved to another state started a new job I have told no one about by dx no family no friends no one at work only my husband knows who also was exposed and self cleared, I do not know how we were exposed I honestly think maybe dental work??, I never took a needle stick or any exposure at work, I did not disclose to current employer I feel that I follow standard universal precaution and the CDC allows the lpn to work under to guidelines of my job duties I just wanted more personal views and input I really do feel alone in this.. thanks for reading
Best Answer
317787 tn?1473358451
Hi I am sorry for your situation.  I thought I could tell people but there is so much ignorance even among the health community I don't know anymore.
While I made the decision to tell because I thought people would understand; I don't know now.
It really does not matter how you got it. You have it and you should try to take care of yourself as well as you can.
While I try to educate as many people as I can, I lost my job so would probably say..unless you are treating it..I see no benefit to you to tell.
When I talk about the ignorance I mean the look that people give you when you tell them.  Then the rude questions...how did you get it?..were insulting to me.  As someone who did tell my employers and my co-workers I wish I could go back and not tell.
I think I would have gotten more understanding if I had said I had cancer and was treating that.
Good luck to you.
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163305 tn?1333668571
You are far from alone.
There are a percentage of people with hep C who have no idea how they were exposed or certainly, when.
Dental work is indeed a possibility.

The truth is it doesn't matter how you got it. What matters is how you take care of your health NOW.

I'm sorry you feel that you can't tell people about your diagnosis. When I first started telling people I was surprised at how many people replied that they knew someone else who had it or had, had it. However, there is still a lot of ignorance about the virus and it is understandable that some people prefer to keep quiet about it.

Good luck.
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Avatar universal
this is from nys dept of health policy guidelines its just an excerpt I'm not sure of your state, I gather its a personal choice, I don't know how invasive your duties are. I know I didn't like telling people just because of the look and asking how I got it..........  Bloodborne pathogen infection alone does not justify limiting a health care worker's professional duties. Limitations, if any, should be determined on a case-by-case basis after consideration of the factors that influence transmission risk, including inability or unwillingness to comply with infection prevention and control standards or functional impairment that interferes with job performance.
Health care workers are not required to inform patients or employers that they have a bloodborne pathogen infection. Such disclosure might serve as a deterrent to workers seeking voluntary testing and medical evaluation. Strict adherence to Standard Precautions is an effective means of preventing transmission of bloodborne pathogens.
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Avatar universal
hi and welcome to the forum! .I really feel for you and the situation that you have found yourself in. My hubby was lucky because he was self-employed so it didnt have that problem but i do agree with other people that it is a very misconstrude thing and people can be very rude just through sheer ignorence and they dont realise how insulting they sound  so i really think the choice is up to you and i dont think that in anyway you are legally bound to tell anybody if you dont want. I wish you all the best & good luck with the new house move and job. Jules
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Avatar universal
I feel that I would never had gotten employment if I revealed the dx, I also have heard/seen the prejudice from both nurses, other staff and management ect, I have educated on HCV and many other diseases. The extreme amount of ignorance and lack of tolerance in the world is shameless.  I do not have insurance through my employer. I am currently asymptomatic so my dx does not have any effect to the company. When and if my health circumstances change I will of course adapt thanks for reading and thank you all for sharing it really is a comfort to me
Helpful - 0
1840891 tn?1431547793
This makes me so sad to read, especially Dee's wishing she could go back and undo the telling. I don't really know how to make sense of these reports of intolerance with my own experiences. Maybe I've just been naively oblivious, but I've always been quite free in telling pretty much anyone about my HCV, and while I've gotten some looks of surprise, I've always interpreted them as being surprised just because I'm more open than most people are about medical and biological stuff, rather than being critical of the actual information. I was educated as a biologist and I've just never felt reticent talking about things to do with health or the body in general (I've also been known as the "tactless wonder" in some circles). I've only once, out of many disclosures, gotten a sense that the person may have taken a negative reaction to it, and even then it wasn't overt enough for me to be sure. I am sometimes asked how I got it, but I think that is normal because everyone wants to refresh their memory on how it is transmitted. I don't take offense at it. I've always assumed I got mine from a blood transfusion I had during back surgery in 1984, and although none of us ever knows for sure, I do tell them this was the probable source and then explain all the other possible ways of getting it, to make sure they all know that it can also be spread via many quite innocent methods in addition to transfusions and IV drugs. In all but one case I have found people seem pretty grateful for the opportunity to learn more about the virus from someone "in the trenches", and I've been blessed with many good wishes by these people.  

I tend to believe that the feeling we have about our own infection makes a huge difference in how the information is perceived by others, so that if we feel some shame about the virus, then we might be more likely to be perceived in a negative way when telling others, and if we feel like innocent victims of the virus then we are more likely to be perceived that way and treated with more compassion. Maybe the trick is in learning to shed any sense of being shamed or dirtied by the virus and recognize the true innocence of all of its victims, regardless of how it was acquired.

Full disclosure:  I've been physically disabled since that same back surgery in 1984 and have not had an employer or fellow employees to worry about. I might also get more compassionate and less judgmental responses because of where I live and who I am - in the SF Bay Area surrounded by educated people who tend to be liberal, and I'm white and middle class, so I don't look like I've ever been part of any of the higher-risk groups (although I once was, as a teenager, but I don't usually mention that to others). Those of you with jobs to keep and living in surroundings with less educated and/or more conservative people may very well need to use a lot more caution, so please don't take my own ideas as reasons to start talking more. Jobs are too important, especially for those who are infected and need to keep their job for the insurance. I guess I'm just hoping to help a little in dispelling any shame associated with the virus.
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Avatar universal
I wouldn't tell anyone. Very sad but there is still a stigma attached to this disease. Unfortunately our goverment is in no hurry to educate people about this disease. Until people are informed keep it quiet.

Best bet would be to treat the disease then you wont have to worry about it once cured.
Helpful - 0
317787 tn?1473358451
I worked with some of the top research scientists in their field.  They work all over the world with people at Scripps, Mayo, John Hopkins, DARPA etc.  They work with people in Sierra Leone.
I thought I could be open and was, I shared everything
Within 2 months of finishing my tx I was informed I would be removed from my job because at that point; I could only work 6 hours a day.  I had cyroglobulinemia and the pain was pretty bad when I relapsed.
I was lucky  that I had 29 1/2 years of service so was able to retire.
I thought people were more enlightened than they were.
I am sorry to say my supervisor did not understand.  Since she was a scientist she knew what petechial hemorrhaging was or purpura but she did not understand anything else.  While I had "rights" under the Americans with Disabilities Act I was too sick to fight for my rights so I had to leave.  We have rights but only if other people care about us.  Earlier in my career I worked with someone in another office who had HCV and received much more support for years.   It is all who you know.

But...saying all of that I went on to treat again 2 years later and with the help of this forum I made it through Incivek and I am now cured.
I am very grateful to everyone here who helped me through the tx.

Thank you
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