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Django Hendrix
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2008
Total Posts : 26
   Posted 1/21/2008 3:36 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi,
I'm new to this forum, but I thought I'd seek some wisdom and guidance from people with more experience than me. I have stage 3 Hep C and I don't exactly know what that means. Up until know I've been receiving subsidized health care from a community clinic, but i'm making a little more money now and I no longer qualify. hopefuly in March, when my insurance kicks in, I'll be covered. The last time I saw my doc, he did a biopsy and told me that my condition had advanced to stage 3, but I don't know what that means. What should I know? How should I be taking care of myself? Where do I go from here?

Thanks!

DH

Django Hendrix
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2008
Total Posts : 26
   Posted 1/21/2008 5:59 PM (GMT -7)   
I should probably also add that I often get a stabbing pain where my liver is. Unfortunately, even though my Dr. is probably really good, I was going to a county outpatient hospital, so there wasn't a lot of individual guidance, and I didn't know what questions to ask. I really don't know what I should be doing in terms of what medications to avoid, what to eat, drink, exercise, etc...and what to expect from this disease. I should probably add that I'm in recovery - sober for four years - so I've eliminated the probably the biggest thing that could have adverse consequences. I have a lot of questions brewing in my mind, so please don't think I'm a pest around here. I just want to educate myself. Many of the resources I've seen only scratch the surface....

hep93
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 12014
   Posted 1/21/2008 9:15 PM (GMT -7)   

Django, first of all welcome!  Secondly, kudos on the sobriety.  :-)   You are correct--alcohol is the worst thing in the world for the liver.  Drink distilled or spring water and juices.  I drink some diet Sprite and Crystal light, as well as green tea, in addition to the water.

As soon as your insurance kicks in, find yourself a good GI doc (gastroenterologist), or preferably a hepatologist...a doctor who specializes in liver diseases and who is associated with the best hospital in your area.  You need to find out about hep C treatment and if you still qualify.  Sorry I can't help you with the staging--I've actually never been told.  I do know that mine led to liver cancer (not in remission) and mild cirrhosis.

That's my best advice for you at this point--and also check out the Hepatitis Resources at the top of this forum.  The Amercan Liver Foundation has a web site and good info on hep C.

Good luck and God bless,

Connie


Pink Grandma
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 2445
   Posted 1/21/2008 9:28 PM (GMT -7)   
Hello Django and welcome to our forum. I googled "stages of liver disease" and found the following on one of the sites:
The third stage of liver disease is called cirrhosis. When liver has been damaged due to inflammation and fibrosis, it does not function properly. Accumulation of scar tissues blocks blood flow through the liver, preventing it from functioning normally. Some of the symptoms of end stage cirrhosis are edema, bruising and bleeding, jaundice, gallstones, and an increase of toxins in the blood, enlarged blood vessels, and diabetes.

Go through some of our older posts and you will find a wealth of information to answer probably most of your questions about what you should or should not do or eat or drink.

We have a great family here on this forum who have a lot of experience with the different liver diseases. Again welcome aboard. Take care........
Pink Grandma
Forum moderator-Hepatitis

When the going gets tough....the tough get going! Don't always know where I going but I get there anyways.


Django Hendrix
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2008
Total Posts : 26
   Posted 1/21/2008 9:36 PM (GMT -7)   
The way I understand is that there are four stages. I was supposed to start interfeuron in december, but I got this new job so I'm disqualified for treatment through the county. Anyway, I'm just a little apprehensive about all of this. I want to do the right thing so that I don't pay for it down the road.

I've read the muscle and joint aches are a symptom. For the past year I've experienced recurring arthritis like pain in my neck shoulder and arm. Go through periods where I have very little appetite (like eat very little for several days) and I can relate to the fatigue, but I have mental health issues that, although they are in remission, screw with my sleep, so I don't know if the fatigue is related to the hep c.

Django Hendrix
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2008
Total Posts : 26
   Posted 1/21/2008 9:40 PM (GMT -7)   
Oops I was replying when Pink Grandma posted. Thanks for welcoming me. I've been in denial about this. Known i've had it for seven years, but shrugged it off. Know I'm getting a little worried...

Pink Grandma
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 2445
   Posted 1/21/2008 9:55 PM (GMT -7)   
Django, no more sticking your head in the sand okay? This disease is no joke and the more educated you get the better you will be able to take care of yourself and slow down the progression.
Fatigue is a big part of the disease at your level. Also expect some fluid retention. The further long in the progression the more symptoms appear.
Google "end stage liver disease symptoms" and see what comes up.
You know what they say......" A good defense is a good offense". Be very proactive in your care. Thoughts and prayers..........
Pink Grandma
Forum moderator-Hepatitis

When the going gets tough....the tough get going! Don't always know where I going but I get there anyways.


frustrated_n_wv
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 469
   Posted 1/22/2008 4:42 AM (GMT -7)   
Django

Welcome to the forum. Pink Grandma and Connie are both correct. Educating yourself is the key to getting the best from your health care providers, now matter whether they are from the county or private care. It also helps me to make a list of questions (that I have came up with through the months or months between appointments) and take them with me when I go to the doctor.

There are many educated people here regarding hep C and end stage liver diseases and I hope you continue to use the forum as a way to help you educate yourself or just vent your frustrations.

Keep us posted and good luck

Lucy

1Shelly1
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 502
   Posted 1/22/2008 7:00 AM (GMT -7)   
Django, hi and welcome to the forum. Everyone is right-educate yourself. There will be decisions that you will be making now that requires you to understand all your options. Such as medications etc. In order to make those decisions you have to know what the Drs are talking about. There is only one way to do it and that is to start reading and studying what the disease is and how it is treated. Once you have a basic understanding you won't be as afraid and you will have a grasp on all your treatment options. Smart people make smart choices. Continue to post on the forum it helps alot.
Shelly
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