So my sister is really sick. Her liver is failing her - and fast. And from a condition no one is sure what to call yet because she has been too ill to get a biopsy done.

During her last 2 ½ weeks stay she was given a feeding tube. She’s still young. She hasn’t even turned 30 yet.

She was put through hell - and for a while there…We weren’t sure she was going to make it.

But now she’s home and safe for the time being - though she is still far from recovery. The doctors said that if she isn’t a lot better by September 7th, 2014 then they absolutely will begin the process for a liver transplant. 

Her hospital bills are astronomical - she is a young American adult over the age of 26 so…she has no health insurance. She has to go on Social Security now - something she desperately does not want to do since she loved her job as manager over at her movie theater but there is no way she will be going back to work for at the very least a year.

If you can find it in your hearts to pull out $5 from your wallet I urge you to visit the gofundme account a friend of hers set up:

Sun Beam Suzie

We’re still a ways off - but please. take a look. on the page you can find her beautiful artwork - like this for example:

i beg of you all to click on that link. i beg of you all to reblog this post even if you don’t donate yourself.

she needs help right now, and every tiny itty bitty bit of help counts so much.

Life dumped a truckload of putrid, moldy lemons on Ted Slavin, and Ted Slavin turned right around and made them into a putrid, moldy lemonade empire. Slavin was a hemophiliac…and back in the ‘50s – when Slavin was born – a hemophiliac wasn’t expected to live beyond 13. The way to treat the condition at the time was through constant blood transfusions…and it wasn’t until the '70s that Slavin found out that the never-ending hypodermic gang-banging he’d been on the receiving end of had pumped him chock-full of hepatitis B.

It turns out, Slavin’s diagnosis came at precisely the right time – because by that point, his body had spent two decades producing ludicrous amounts of antibodies to fend off the pesky viral intruders, and the way to test someone for hepatitis B back then was to see how their blood reacted to the very antibodies that Slavin was pumping out in mass quantities. So he stuck a price tag on his blood (10 bucks a milliliter) and went into business with Big Pharma, selling them as much as 500 milliliters a pop – and demand was through the roof.

Now, you’re probably thinking that Slavin was just a savvy businessman who simply took financial advantage of a horrible situation, but bear with us, because this next part is what elevates his story into the realm of true awesomeness: Slavin looked up Baruch Blumberg, the Nobel Prize-winning researcher who had first discovered the hepatitis B antigen and created the test used to detect the disease. Slavin offered Blumberg all the blood he could possibly need for the hefty fee of zero dollars, just so long as it was used for creating a vaccine. A few years later, the first hepatitis B vaccine went into production … all thanks to Slavin’s putrid, moldy lemonade.

5 People Who Overcame the F#@% Out of Awful Disabilities

New Drug Combination Treats Hepatitis C Patients also infected with HIV
Novel treatment has 97 percent success rate in co-infected patients

Roughly 20 to 30 percent of patients with hepatitis C virus (HCV) are also infected with human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV). Both blood-borne viruses share the same modes of transmission, but many HCV medications currently have significant limitations due to adverse interactions with HIV treatments. Researchers at University of California, San Diego School of Medicine report a new combination that effectively treats HCV in patients co-infected with HIV.

The study, published online in the New England Journal of Medicine, found the combination of HCV drugs daclatasvir and sofosbuvir – both pills – cured HCV in 97 percent of patients also infected with HIV.

“In many HCV/HIV co-infected patients, HCV therapies can have a strong interaction with HIV medications that complicate or potentially exclude them from HCV treatment,” said David Wyles, MD, lead author of the study in the Division of Infectious Diseases. “This study is novel because it shows the new drug combination was not compromised when used with a wide range of HIV medications, increasing the number of HCV/HIV patients who can be treated without modifying their HIV medications.”

The 12-week study involved 151 patients and was the first to test this treatment regimen in those with HIV/HCV. Patients who participated in the clinical trial were closely monitored up to 24 weeks post treatment.

Another reason the study findings are important, said Wyles, is because HCV is a major cause of chronic liver disease in the United States, and liver damage progresses more rapidly in those also infected with HIV.

“Liver disease is a leading cause of death among HIV patients, so it is a high priority to treat co-infected patients and reduce the potentially fatal effect,” said Wyles, also associate professor of medicine at UC San Diego School of Medicine.

Sofosbuvir is already approved for use in the United States; daclatasvir is scheduled to be reviewed by the Food and Drug Administration in August.

“These findings are very exciting in the infectious diseases world, as they could help an entire demographic that has historically struggled finally receive successful treatment for HCV,” said Wyles.


Dos noticias que juntas dan mucha rabia.

Por un lado los enfermos de Hepatitis C, dónde estan esperando las medicinas desde este verano, y dónde cada día mueren 13 personas. Y por otro lado, el gasto en smartphones y ADSL para los diputados. Mira por dónde, para eso si que hay dinero, pero para lo otro no hay prisa.

No es cuestión de que tengamos diputados en España que tengan que comunicarse con señales de humo, pero ahora mismo tendrían que tener otras prioridades, sobre todo cuando hay vidas en juego y familias pasándolo mal.

$1,000-Hepatitis C Pill Earns Pharma Company A Record-Breaking $2.3 Billion

The launch of Sovaldi, the $1,000-a-day pill for hepatitis C, is shaping up as the most successful ever.

The Food and Drug Administration approved the pill in December. And then Gilead Sciences was off to the races. The company said it sold $2.27 billion worth of Sovaldi in the quarter that ended March 31. $2.27 billion!

The boffo number beat Wall Street’s estimate for the quarter by more than $1 billion.

Sovaldi is the first hepatitis C pill that doesn’t have to be accompanied by interferon for some types of hepatitis. Sovaldi has been found to be remarkably effective, essentially curing 90 percent or more patients with a common form of hepatitis C in 12 weeks.

“Sovaldi’s profile has the potential to transform the treatment of hepatitis C, and the rapid uptake speaks to a significant unmet medical need,” Gilead CEO John Martin told analysts and investors during a Tuesday conference call.

But the price of the drug has drawn fire. “The predicted costs of the new oral antiviral agents are as breathtaking as their effectiveness,” said an editorial in a recent issue of the New England Journal of Medicine. “Costs alone cast a pall over the stunning success in achieving the long-hoped-for goal of a safe and effective therapy for hepatitis C.”

Continue reading

Photo: Sovaldi, a daily oral treatment for hepatitis C, costs $1,000 a pill. (Courtesy of Gilead Sciences)

Hepatitis C, now cure rates of up to 100%.

The European Commission has approved Daclatasvir (Daklinza, Bristol-Myers Squibb) to treat adults with chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection in combination with Sofosbuvir, the company announced today.

Daclatasvir blocks the action of NS5A, a protein essential for HCV replication. It is indicated for adults infected with HCV genotypes 1, 2, 3, and 4. In a news release, the company notes that oral Daclatasvir in combination with oral Sofosbuvir provided cure rates of up to 100% in clinical trials, including in patients with advanced liver disease, genotype 3, and those who have previously failed treatment with protease inhibitors.

Daclatasvir is the first NS5A complex inhibitor approved in the European Union (EU) and provides a “shorter treatment duration (12 or 24 weeks) compared to 48 weeks of treatment with interferon and ribavirin based regimens.

Across clinical studies, Daclatasvir-based regimens have been generally well-tolerated, with low discontinuation rates. The most common adverse effects with daclatasvir when used in combination with other drugs are fatigue, headache, and nausea. The safety of Daclatasvir has been demonstrated in diverse patient populations that include elderly patients, patients with advanced liver disease, post–liver transplant recipients, and patients coinfected with HIV, the company says.

(To read more. To read more about Sofosbuvir).

Like a living board question

Leaving patient’s room on bedside rounds…

Wayfaring: hey intern, did you notice that patient’s tattoos?

Intern: uh, there were a lot of them?

Wayfaring: And they looked pretty homemade. Check a hepatitis panel on him.

Attending: Overkill much?

Wayfaring: You wanna make a bet about it? I’ll take your money. Plus screening is recommended in his age group. PLUS he had mildly elevated LFTs.

Next day in rounds…

Intern: So Mr. Tattoo’s hepatitis panel came back… positive for hep C.

Wayfaring: We have a winner!

Even if we aren’t the ones suffering, we too suffer for the pain of our loved ones:

My fiance has hep c and has for about 7 years. We have been together for a year. He was on a pain medicine for all the pain but was getting addicted to it and got off it. Now all symptoms of hep c are coming back. joint pain, knees/legs hurt so bad trouble walking, stomach pain and hurts to touch, headache, depression and sometimes his skin is really sensitive to the touch. I touched his arm yesterday and he jumped and said it hurt. I am so worried for him and scared. Dont know what I can do to help him. he is in so much pain … I just need someone to talk to that understands and has similar symptoms or has had successful treatment to give me hope. I love him and I feel lost.

Can you lend this user some support? Click here: http://hepatitis-c.supportgroups.com/sg/hepatitis-c/my-fiance-has-hep-c-and-has-for-about-7-ye

This “miracle drug” can cure 150 million people of Hepatitis C … but there’s one problem

It’s astronomically expensive, and no one wants to pay for it.

For those who suffer from Hepatitis C — an estimated 150–200 million people worldwide — a drug called Sofosbuvir (being sold as Sovaldi) may have seemed like the answer. After gaining approval in the U.S. last December, Sovaldi has been the most effective cure to date when it comes to suppressing the virus. Experts have called it a “major breakthrough” and a “turning point,” and deservedly so — the drug’s success rate speaks for itself. 

Read more | Follow policymic

The Editor-in-Chief of Open Forum Infectious Diseases, Dr. Paul E. Sax, offers good news about Hepatitis C treatment on OUPblog in recognition of the World Health Organization’s World Hepatitis Day. Read his blog post, “World Hepatitis Day: reason to celebrate,” on the history and future of the disease and how we’ve arrived at a 90% cure rate.

I have learned over the past few months that Tumblr only cares about a handful of issues.

  • sexism (including anti-LGBT hate)
  • weight-shaming (including in the cosplay community)
  • racism
  • The mentally handicapped (insert politically correct term here)
  • note: these are what I see on my dash most; don’t kill me

Post about any of these, even negatively, and your notes will explode.  They do have something in common.  These issues will never be experienced by every single person on the planet.  Women experience a different kind of sexism than men do.  Straights aren’t going to get death threats for being straight the way a gay man or woman might for their sexuality.  White people can care about and change racism, but they won’t experience it themselves (tumblr seems to have dubbed this “white privilege”).  Tumblr cares a lot about people with mental-related issues.  Depression, autism, anorexia, etc.  There also seems to be some sort of “privilege” label for those who don’t experience that, but I can’t put my finger on it.   Not everyone goes through weight-shaming, but a chunk of people go through skinny- and fat-shaming.  Once you get to society’s idea of a good weight, those don’t apply to you (except when you run into a special dickhead who thinks everyone’s fat, or your own mind can still shame you).  

Things I have never seen without having to look:

  • Support for any kind of STD

What they don’t seem to care about are things that can affect every single person alive.  Specifically I’m talking about STDs.  There is only a very small community for support.  I haven’t seen a single HIV/AIDs or HepA/B/C support or awareness post on my dash. Ever.  I’ve never seen anyone admit to having an STD the same way everyone so readily talks about their depression, suicide attempts, or obsessive compulsive disorder.  Even tumblr is ashamed of its STD/Is.  Ah, yes, another thing society has bestowed upon us.  Generally, you get these by having sex, which I would think Tumblr would be okay with.  I see people proclaiming pride in their sexual prowess all the time.  When you admit to having an STI, all you’re saying is, “hey, I had sex and this happened.”  There are STIs as simple as BV (bacterial vaginosis; mmm). Most women will get this at least once in her life.  It goes away with a usually short treatment.  I can see people not making  a big deal out of that because it isn’t a huge life event.   Lifelong things like Hepatitis, Herpes, and HIV or AIDs are kind of huge events and big parts of peoples’ lives when they get them.   Yet they’re still looked down upon for it.  Tumblr is a great way for attempting to rid society of stigmas, yet they haven’t seemed to take up this particular cause.  Having an STD/I does not make you a bad person.  Having an STD/I is not a punishment for having too much sex.  Having an STD/I is a thing that we shouldn’t ever be ashamed of.  What happens happens.  

I’ve had my close friends outright fucking refuse to reblog any kind of STI support because it “doesn’t fit their blog”. That hurts.  They’ll post naked people in the act of sex, but they won’t post about the possible things that can come after it.   They’ll post “this is not a costume” or “women aren’t passive aggressive; they’re scared” or “you’re beautiful and perfect and here are ten reason you shouldn’t kill yourself.”  All worthy causes, please don’t get me wrong.  There just seems to still be something shameful about admitting that STD/Is are a thing and that needs to stop.