When you do make your first appointment, perhaps the first question you’d want to ask your doctor would be, Is there any cure for Hepatitis C? Which is perfectly understandable and no doubt your doctor would provide you with a detailed explanation of the kind of treatments available for curing the Hep C virus similar to those you are about to read below:
Stepping backwards a step we need to have a cursory look at how you should prepare yourself for your important appointment with your doctor. Note the list provided below:
As early as possible, make an arrangement with one of your family members to accompany you to your appointment. This is an insurance move just in case you fail to remember everything the doctor said during the appointment. If you have someone to accompany you all the loose ends will be tied.
- Medical history.
It’s always critical to have with you, all the information you need to give the doctor during your very first appointment after noticing you have Hep C. You doctor would appreciate knowing your previous medical history for making the right medical decisions.
- Symptoms you’ve noticed
Also essential would be the changes which you have noticed that have started to happen. Make a list of all of them even if they are not directly related to your condition because they may prove useful to the doctor.
Be proactive and pre-empt your appointment visit by asking beforehand of any restrictions such as any intake of solid food or drink. These may inhibit the proper ingesting of any preliminary medicines that may be given.
- Present medications
You should also provide the doctor with a list of all medication you took in the past up to the present again for the benefit of your doctor including over-the-counter medications, online purchased medicines both legal and illegal. The information will assist your doctor in pointing you in the right direction.
Present and Future Hepatitis C Treatments
Medications currently being used for the treatment of Hepatitis C are known as anti-viral medications, that is, medications that directly combat Hep C in invading and overtaking control of your body especially the liver.
The disease enters the body through the bloodstream through the sexual act or from receiving intravenous drug injections with infected needles.
The aim of the 12-week treatment course is to eliminate the presence of the Hep C virus from your body and render it safe from future attacks by the virus. The information that you provide will guide the doctor in making the best decision for you to stay on top of the virus invasion.
As already mentioned, the first stage of the hepatitis disease is the acute stage which is called acute Hepatitis C when someone is infected by the virus for the very first time. The second stage of the condition is called chronic Hepatitis C when the infection progresses to a more serious stage.
Although Hepatitis C is the primary cause of liver cancer and the number of liver transplants, it’s curable. It gains entrance into the body when a person makes contact with contaminated blood, so it’s easily transmitted by a tattoo or drug needle and sometimes during the sexual act.
Cure has been difficult and uncomfortable especially in receiving painful shots of interferon and the ingestion of the ribavirin tablet. These drugs circumvented the virus itself and instead boosted the immune system to combat the virus in the same way of combating the flu.
The treatment course sometimes failed to rid the Hep C virus completely from the body and cure rates remained constant at around 50% and to make matters worse the treatment course was for a whole year and those who didn’t go the entire way had to put up with side effects.
Current and future medications
People now are experiencing greater success as getting rid of the Hep C virus and all they have to do is simply take a pill in the comfort of their home only for a few weeks without needing to get injections.
Medications these days are not single solutions for many genotypes of Hep C viruses of which hepatitis C Type 1 is the best known. These meds are given according to the level of scarring or cirrhosis your liver has been subjected to.
Nevertheless the medications are a new breed of drugs which doctors may well call direct-acting antivirals. They swoop in on the virus that’s making you sick and work in different ways to try and expel the virus from the body. Their main target are the proteins that sustain and help the virus grow and extend outwards.
Research keeping pace with demand for Hep C medication
Due to the very active progress in research many newly discovered medications and combinations have been found to be effective but it should be noted that because of the continuous development of new treatments, discoveries of new treatment combinations continue to be paired.
This means that a continuous flurry of changes in treatments and combinations should be expected to take place constantly for the benefit of Hep C sufferers. Here are some of the most effective single and combined treatments for different types of hepatitis C:
Daclatasvir (Daklinza): This treatment ended injection treatments for every person suffering from HCV types 1 and 3 who take it once a day with sofosbuvir (Sovaldi). Fatigue and a headache may set in but if over fatigue takes over, alert your doctor. A warning from the FDA says the treatment may reduce heart rate, which may mean you should get a pacemaker.
Elbasvir and grazoprevir (Zepatier): also taken once a day to treat HCV types 1 and 4, ideal for those with cirrhosis, HIV and serious kidney condition and other conditions. The usual slight headache, stomach ache and fatigue are side effects.
Glecaprevir and pibrentasvir (Mavyret): three tablets a day will treat all types of hepatitis C with mild side effects that may include nausea, fatigue, diarrhea and headache.
Ledipasvir and sofosbuvir (Harvoni): taken once a day and the first interferon-free treatment for type 1 sufferers and subsequently received FDA approval a year later for treatment of HCV types 4,5 and 6, a revolution in the treatment of HCV.
Ombitasvir, paritaprevir, and ritonavir, with dausabuvir (Viekira Pak): a treatment suitable for individuals with HCV type 1. One pill is taken daily plus another pill twice a day. Scarring of the liver doesn’t prevent a person from taking the pills as long as the liver can function. Some say it’s badly designed, others say it’s better than injections but people with serious cirrhosis shouldn’t use it.
Simpeprevir (Olysio) and sofosbuvir (Sovaldi): FDA approved using the two drugs to treat HCV type 1 once treated by ingesting the pills with interferon or ribavirin. Side effects include stomach pain, fatigue, headache and difficulty in sleeping.
Sofosbuvir and velpatasvir (Epclusa): A single tablet taken once a day for all types of Hep C. Common side effects are fatigue and headache.
Sofosbuvir, velpatasvir, and voxilaprevir (Vosevi): Same as the above treatment pill. Your doctor will only prescribe it if patient doesn’t have cirrhosis and other treatments have failed. Side effects
After reading the steady progress that has been achieved over the years in connection with the treatment for HCV, the question Is there a cure for Hepatitis C? appear to be redundant It’s a great relief that one of the most feared health conditions by mankind has certainly lost its sting and will lose still more until it becomes an ill of the past.