The importance of good health is no mystery to anyone. Healthy health is a condition of full mental, physical and social well-being and not just the absence of illness or infirmity. A happy and healthy life is one with good relationships, a sense of humor, and the ability to contribute rather than take. Good health is a gift to be cherished and should receive it from our birthright.
What most people don’t realize is that they are lucky enough to be born into a world in which good health is not only attainable but something to be practiced. There are a number of diseases and conditions, which if left untreated could greatly affect the quality of life. One such disease is hepatitis c, or cirrhosis of the liver. In the past, those who tested positive for hepatitis c were stigmatized and were excluded from society, making finding a cure for this condition and thus, treatment much more difficult.
Luckily, modern medicine has afforded us a great deal of knowledge in the area of treating and preventing disease. Hepatitis C, for example, is no longer associated with shame and has been widely accepted as a curable condition. With the advent of new Hepatitis C drug use, the numbers of those diagnosed with hepatitis C has dramatically dropped. For those who continue to be diagnosed with this disease, there are several ways in which they can receive effective and timely health care.
Those diagnosed with either chronic or recurrent Hepatitis C virus infections need to receive regular health care checkups. Those who inject drugs are particularly at risk for hepatitis c infections, as injecting drugs is one method that allows the infection to spread from person to person. An HIV-infected person is also at higher risk for developing a Hepatitis C virus infection. Hepatitis C treatment involves drugs taken on an ongoing basis, so those who have contracted the disease need to remain on a strict regimen until their immune system is strong enough to fight off a Hepatitis C infection.
Hepatitis C treatments vary according to the severity of a person’s condition. A chronic Hepatitis C patient may require liver transplantation, which removes some or all of a person’s liver. There are three main types of treatment for chronic hepatitis c; all involve the use of drugs that destroy or take away the ability of the virus to reproduce. Injectable drugs are used to treat chronic Hepatitis C, but do come with some serious side effects.
When a Hepatitis C patient receives treatment through an injection form of medicine, there is a possibility that the virus can escape from the body during the course of the medication. When this happens, it is possible for the Hepatitis C infection to reoccur, usually causing serious complications. If the Hepatitis C virus reoccurs, it is important to receive further medical attention to determine if the infection has become too advanced. In some cases, the virus has been dormant for so long that the patient may not even be aware that he or she has had the infection.
A chronic Hepatitis C patient may be treated with drugs, such as a non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase (NRT) Inhibitor, a Triphosphamide (TP) in combination with anti-inflammatory and anti-biotic medicines. If NRT and TMP-PI are not effective or are too expensive for the patient and his or her doctor, there is a chance that a liver biopsy may be recommended. The Liver Biopsy will give the doctor a better understanding of the severity of the Hepatitis C infection and will help him or her determine the best course of treatment. However, the Liver Biopsy is not necessary if a patient’s Hepatitis C infection has been dormant for more than six months.
The importance of not being diagnosed early also applies to the prevention of Hepatitis C. It is important to be tested if you have symptoms of Hepatitis C or have had previous flare-ups of your Hepatitis C infection. Being Hepatitis C free is no small or easy task, especially if you are a chronic Hepatitis C sufferer! It takes about twelve weeks or more for the infection to disappear completely from your system, and if it has been dormant for more than six months, it may take even longer to be rid of. However, by staying informed about Hepatitis C, you can help yourself live a longer and healthier life.