Results 106 to 120 of 183
11-18-11, 09:22 PM #106
Stinkin' airguns. That is one thing that the VA will not admit to even though it is clearly a risk factor and the one thing us Nam vets had in common and why our group of veterans has so many sick with HCV.
Do you know that HCV wasn't recognized until 1989. Prior to that it was called non hepatitis A- non hepatitis B. Once it was isolated a test for it was not developed until 1992 at which point the DoD did what/, You guessed it they discontinued air guns and went to single dose syringes to give us our shots.
The VA knows that if they admit it was the air guns it would be the same as having HCV a presumptive condition because we all got our shots with air guns. 50 year sfrom now when we're all dead they will admit it but not now.
11-18-11, 11:18 PM #107
Thanks Brother Ted, I use Sweet and Low in my coffee and in cereal for my sweet tooth. Good ideal to check with my Doc about those.
Good luck with your treatment Ted. I pray for God to give you the strength to make it through it.
Bad news/Good news
My lung trouble is a lot worst than I thought. I knew I was having trouble breathing, waking up gasping for air, red cell count extremely high. I just didn't know it was this bad. I have to get a Pulmonologist to sign off on the Pagasys, as it causes lung trouble. I'm almost positive he won't.
The good news, three months ago someone from the VA called me and told me of non-service connected war vet pension. I guess our social services lady at my local clinic contacted them, not sure. He told me to apply for it, that he thinks I may be eligible for it. He said by law, they had to make a decision on it in 30 days. So I did.
A few days after applying online and sending them a copy of my DD214, I received a letter stating that they needed a original copy, a list of hospitals, doctors, statement from people stating that I'm home bound, ect.
They said if they didn't receive it before the 30 days, I still had a year to summit it.
I kinda blew it off, having seen the run around others had with them.
Nov 15 was a bittersweet day for me as it's my daughters birthday and the day I lost her on her 7th birthday in 1980.
That night I was really down when my son walked in and handed me a government check. We weren't sure if it was his (Jr) or mine. Opening a VA letter the I found the following:
It helped to raise my sprites, some. Then I realized what it meant. I had seen the x-ray with spots covering my lungs, I knew about the red count, but I haven't read the report from the x-ray. To get 100% it must be bad. I called my primary Doc and he's set up some test and a appointment with a Pulmonologist. So you understand why I don’t think I can take the Pagasys.
I’m going to start using this thread to post news for all our Brothers, just now I feel a little low, so it may be a couple of days.
All of you are in my prayers, and again good luck Ted.
Hang tough Marines
11-19-11, 01:02 AM #108
Sorry, I meant to say I haven't seen the High Res CT scan reports.
Must be bad though. I do know how much trouble I'm having breathing, can't make it to my mail box without stopping to catch my breath.
11-19-11, 01:28 AM #109
News for HCV Marines Veterans.
Effectiveness and Safety of PEGASYS® (peginterferon alfa-2a)
In clinical trials, PEGASYS—alone or in combination with COPEGUS® (ribavirin, USP)—consistently provided significant sustained virologic response vs. interferon alfa-2b + ribavirin. In these trials, SVR was defined as an undetectable level of the hepatitis C virus 6 months after the end of treatment.
The length of treatment and how well it works depends on many different factors for each individual. One of the main divisions of hepatitis C treatment is by genotype of the virus you have. The most common type in the United States is genotype 1. Studies have found that hepatitis C patients who are treated before liver damage occurs may respond better to treatment.
Two large clinical trials have been conducted to show the effectiveness of PEGASYS and COPEGUS combination therapy in patients with hepatitis C.
- Overall, 56% of the patients in one trial and 63% of the patients in the other trial, who received PEGASYS once weekly with COPEGUS daily, achieved SVR after 48 weeks of treatment
- 46% of the genotype 1 patients in one trial, and 52% in the other achieved SVR after 48 weeks of treatment with PEGASYS and COPEGUS
- 84% of the genotype 2 or 3 patients who received PEGASYS with COPEGUS achieved SVR after 24 weeks of treatment
In clinical trials, the most commonly reported side effects in patients treated with PEGASYS and COPEGUS included:
- Flu-like symptoms
- Skin problems
- Hair loss
- Loss of appetite
What Is Copegus?
COPEGUS® (ribavirin, USP), which you also may have heard of by its generic name, ribavirin, is a medication that is used in combination with PEGASYS to help fight the hepatitis C virus. COPEGUS is taken twice a day with food.
Although COPEGUS cannot fight the hepatitis C virus on its own, studies have shown that it does help PEGASYS work better. The precise reason why this combination of drugs works well is not clear. What is known is that COPEGUS interferes with the reproduction of the hepatitis C virus in many ways—one way is by causing mistakes to be made when the genetic material of the virus is being copied during reproduction. For viruses to survive in your body, they need to reproduce quickly. Interrupting that process helps your body fight off the attack.
Nearly all patients treated with PEGASYS and COPEGUS experience one or more side effects. If you do have side effects, you should know that they can become serious, so be sure to speak with your healthcare provider about any side effects you may be experiencing.
The most common side effect is flu-like symptoms (including fever, chills, muscle aches, joint pain, and headaches), which can be treated.
Other common side effects associated with pegylated interferon plus ribavirin include:
- Fatigue (tiredness)
- Upset stomach (like nausea, taste changes, diarrhea)
- Blood sugar problems, such as high or low blood sugar, and diabetes
- Loss of appetite
- Redness and swelling at injection site
- Skin problems (like rash, dry or itchy skin)
- Hair loss (temporary)
- Trouble sleeping
COPEGUS can be extremely harmful and cause birth defects in an unborn baby. Female patients and the female partners of male patients should avoid getting pregnant. Ribavirin is known to cause anemia (low red blood cells), which can make heart disease worse. Also, ribavirin can harm your DNA and possibly cause cancer (see medication guide for more information and warnings).
What Is Pegasys (Peginterferon alfa-2a) Interferon Treatment?
PEGASYS is a form of interferon treatment—a substance that has been shown to help fight hepatitis C. It is used alone or in combination with COPEGUS® (ribavirin, USP) in adults with compensated liver disease not previously treated with interferon alpha.
Hepatitis C treatment with PEGASYS is taken for 24 or 48 weeks (depending on the type of your hepatitis C virus).
More than 6000 hepatitis C patients have been treated in key PEGASYS clinical trials all over the world. In addition, PEGASYS is the most frequently studied interferon in combination with oral antivirals in development.
Side Effects of Hepatitis C Treatment
Nearly all patients treated with PEGASYS and COPEGUS® (ribavirin, USP) experience one or more side effects. If you do have side effects, you should know that they can become serious, so be sure to speak with your healthcare provider about any side effects you may be experiencing.
The following are some of the most common side effects associated with pegylated interferon plus ribavirin therapy:
- Flu-like symptoms (including fever, chills, muscle aches, joint pain, and headaches)
- Fatigue (tiredness)
- Upset stomach (nausea, taste changes, diarrhea)
- Blood sugar problems, such as high or low blood sugar, and diabetes
- Loss of appetite
- Redness or swelling at injection site
- Skin problems (rash, dry or itchy skin)
- Hair loss (temporary)
- Trouble sleeping
- Mental health problems (such as depression, thoughts about suicide, suicide attempts and relapse of drug abuse or drug overdose, all of which can lead to death. Other problems include thoughts of homicide or hurting other people, irritability, anxiety, aggressiveness, bipolar disorders, mania, and hallucinations)
- Blood problems (like a drop in blood cells leading to increased risk for infections, bleeding and/or heart or circulatory problems). Low levels of red blood cells can cause death in patients taking COPEGUS. Most blood counts may be reduced including white blood cell, red blood cell, platelets, hemoglobin, neutrophil, and lymphocyte counts.
- Other blood disorders
- Problems with pregnancy
- Lung problems (like trouble breathing, pneumonia, inflammation of lung tissue, and high lung blood pressure), sometimes requiring a machine to breathe for you and/or causing death
- Eye problems (blurred, loss of vision, retinal detachment, and corneal ulcers related to intestinal inflammation)
- Autoimmune problems (sarcoidosis, rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus, psoriasis, and thyroid problems, such as hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism)
- Heart problems (including high or low blood pressure, chest pain, fast heart rate, and heart attacks) which can lead to death
- Stomach pain (stomach or intestinal inflammation)
- Rash with fever or blisters
- Weakness, loss of coordination, numbness, and difficulty speaking due to stroke, including patients with no known risk for stroke
- Liver problems (rarely, liver function worsens) including an increased chance of liver failure in patients with cirrhosis. Patients with both the hepatitis C virus and HIV have an increased chance of liver failure during PEGASYS treatment. Change in a blood test that measures liver inflammation occurs more often in patients with hepatitis B. If you have a rise in this blood test you may need to be watched more closely with additional blood tests. Severe liver damage can lead to death
- Colitis (inflammation of the colon, which can cause abdominal pain, bloody diarrhea, and fever) which can lead to death
- Inflammation of the pancreas, muscles, and bile ducts which can lead to death
- Blood sugar problems such as high or low blood sugar and diabetes
- Bacterial, viral, fungal infections (such as in the blood, bones, heart, kidneys and lungs) which can lead to death
COPEGUS can be extremely harmful and cause birth defects in an unborn baby. Female patients and the female partners of male patients should avoid getting pregnant. Ribavirin is known to cause anemia (low red blood cells), which can make heart disease worse. Also, ribavirin can harm your DNA and possibly cause cancer.
Is Pegasys Right for Me?
- Only your healthcare provider can help you dtermine if Pegasys treatment is right for you
- PEGASYS is the most prescribed pegylated interferon
- PEGASYS offers support through a comprehensive patient-support program known as PEGASSIST®. The program includes a 24-hour nurse hotline, a patient support site at Pegassist.com, educational and self-injection information, and Pegassist print materials. (We also provide lots of information and tools for healthcare professionals.)
It may be tempting to put off treatment altogether. Seventy percent of people who have chronic hepatitis C infection go on to have chronic liver disease. The course of treatment can be difficult for many people, and it may seem easier to do nothing—to wait until a better, more convenient time in the future. But ask yourself these questions:
- Will I ever be stronger, healthier, more ready to take on prescription treatment than I am right now?
Hepatitis C and HIV Treatment—PEGASYS® (peginterferon alfa-2a)
About 1,000,000 people in the United States have HIV—up to one-third of these people also have hepatitis C. With the major improvements in HIV therapy in the last 2 decades, hepatitis C-related illness has emerged a major health problem for people with both infections.
In patients with hepatitis C and HIV, liver disease is one of the leading causes of death.
Previously, there was no approved hepatitis C treatment in patients who were HIV-positive. However, combination therapy with PEGASYS and COPEGUS® (ribavirin, USP) was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat hepatitis C in a group of people with both infections. This approval was based on a major clinical study that found that 4 out of 10 (40%) people with clinically stable HIV, liver disease from hepatitis C, and no previous treatment with interferon responded well to hepatitis C treatment with PEGASYS and COPEGUS.
Most Serious Side Effects for PEGASYS
PEGASYS, like other alpha interferons, can cause fatal or make life-threatening problems worse (like mental, immune system, heart, liver, lung, intestinal and infections). Your healthcare provider should monitor you during regular visits. If you show signs or symptoms of these conditions, your healthcare provider may stop your medication. In most patients, these conditions get better after you stop taking PEGASYS.
Your healthcare provider and other members of your healthcare team who treat you for HIV can make recommendations about whether (and when) hepatitis C treatment should begin. Be sure to talk to them about your options and the advantages of hepatitis C treatment for your overall health.
What should you do? The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says:
People who have hepatitis C infection and are also HIV+ should
- be given information about prevention of liver damage
- undergo evaluation for chronic liver disease
- be considered for treatment (if indicated)
Yes. Of course your HIV status is of great importance to your decisions and your healthcare provider's treatment plan. In fact, all medical information and advice needs to be cleared through your healthcare provider ?whatever your health status. (That's why we always say "Talk to your healthcare provider.") Read further on this page for some specific information about hepatitis C/HIV coinfection, and then explore the rest of the site.
Why is the liver so important to my health?
Your liver is one of the largest and most important organs in your body.
- Changes food into energy
- Makes proteins and processes fats and sugars
- Cleans harmful substances from the blood
Why is maintaining a healthy liver so important in treating my HIV?
Hepatitis C causes the liver to become inflamed. This can lead to liver damage and cirrhosis. Cirrhosis is when healthy liver tissue is replaced by scar tissue that may prevent the liver from working normally. Eventually, the liver may stop working.
If hepatitis C causes enough damage to the liver, it may not be possible to start or stay on HIV medication. This is why you may need to treat hepatitis C before there is major liver damage.
The possibility of liver damage is an important reason to speak with your healthcare provider about getting treated for hepatitis C. The longer you wait, the more serious the damage to the liver may be.
How does being HIV+ affect hepatitis C?
When you have both hepatitis C and HIV, liver damage may occur faster than in people who have hepatitis C only. In fact, liver disease may lead to cirrhosis 3 times faster in people who are coinfected with hepatitis C and HIV compared with people with hepatitis C alone.
How does having hepatitis C affect HIV infection?
Hepatitis C does not seem to make HIV worse. But the liver damage from hepatitis C may make it harder for your liver to process HIV drugs.
What can happen if hepatitis C is not treated?
If left untreated, hepatitis C may result in serious liver damage. Consequently, the liver will be unable to do its many jobs, including processing your HIV medications.
Why it is important you speak with your healthcare provider about treatment today:
- Liver disease is one of the leading causes of death in patients coinfected with hepatitis C and HIV
- Liver disease may progress fast, and you cannot predict how fast your liver disease will advance
- On average, it can take approximately 7 years for some people's livers to develop advanced scarring
The main goal of hepatitis C treatment is to achieve SVR. An SVR means that no virus can be found in the blood for at least 6 months after stopping treatment. This is unlike HIV, where lifelong therapy is required to keep the virus suppressed.
What HIV medications should you avoid when you are on hepatitis C medication?
You should not take didanosine with COPEGUS. Talk to your healthcare provider about other medications you can take instead.
Your healthcare provider will watch you to make sure you are not having problems taking other HIV drugs with PEGASYS and COPEGUS.
What should I ask my healthcare provider about treatment?
Hepatitis C medication is available for people with HIV. If you have chronic hepatitis C, ask your healthcare provider about treatment. Find out if there is any medical reason why you cannot try hepatitis C medication. Also, let your healthcare provider know if you have any worries about taking medication for hepatitis C.
What effect do PEGASYS and COPEGUS have on CD4+ cell counts?
As a person with HIV, you are probably well aware of your CD4+ cell count and understand how important it is to keep it as high as possible. You may even use it as a measure of your HIV control.
In studies, the CD4+ cell counts of some patients with HIV taking PEGASYS and COPEGUS went down. But after treatment ended, they went back up to the levels they were before they started taking these medications. Your healthcare provider will continue to monitor your CD4+ cell counts during therapy.
How does taking PEGASYS and COPEGUS affect my HIV?
Studies have shown that PEGASYS and COPEGUS do not affect HIV viral load. When patients were given these medications, their average HIV viral loads did not go up during treatment.
How long do I take PEGASYS and COPEGUS?
You should follow your healthcare provider’s instructions. The recommended time period for treatment in patients coinfected with hepatitis C and HIV is 48 weeks, no matter what strain (genotype) of hepatitis C you have.
What dose of PEGASYS do I use?
You should follow your healthcare provider's instructions. The recommended dose is 180 mcg once a week. If you are having a problem, your doctor might reduce the dose for a while to either 135 mcg or 90 mcg. Both of these doses are marked on the prefilled syringe.
What dose of COPEGUS do I use?
You should follow your healthcare provider’s instructions. The recommended dose is 800 mg divided into 2 doses each day, and taken with food. Again, if there is a problem, your healthcare provider might reduce the dose. Always follow your healthcare provider’s instructions.
What are the possible side effects of treatment?
Side effects of treatment with PEGASYS and COPEGUS were similar for people with and without HIV. Click here to learn more about side effects? A few side effects were more common in people with HIV, including anemia, other blood disorders (neutropenia and thrombocytopenia), weight decrease, and mood alteration.
Pegasys as Treatment for People with Chronic Hepatitis B
In 2005, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved PEGASYS for the treatment of chronic hepatitis B. Already the most prescribed hepatitis C medication in the United States, PEGASYS is the first and only pegylated interferon approved by the FDA for the treatment of chronic hepatitis B.
The main goals of treatment are to achieve sustained suppression of hepatitis B virus replication and ultimately prevention of cirrhosis, hepatic failure, and hepatocellular carcinoma (liver cancer).
PEGASYS helps to reduce the amount of virus in your blood, and helps your immune system fight the virus. It is among the preferred first-line treatment options for patients with either HBeAg-postive or HBeAg-negative disease.
- A person who is HBeAg-positive has high levels of hepatitis B virus in his or her blood and is considered highly infectious
- A person who is HBeAg-negative has lower levels of the hepatitis B virus in his or her blood compared with HBeAg-positive patients. They also have low or zero levels of the “e” antigen in their blood, which means the body has a more difficult time defending against the virus
Hepatitis B is a contagious disease caused by a virus that attacks the liver. The virus enters the body through contact with infected blood or bodily fluids. In the United States, up to 1.4 million people have chronic hepatitis B.
Almost all (90%-95%) adults who contract hepatitis B clear the virus from their systems within a few months and develop immunity. However, the remainder of infections become chronic, which is when the virus stays in the blood, infecting liver cells and possibly damaging them over time.
In the United States, the most common modes of transmission of the hepatitis B virus are through sexual and blood-to-blood contact, although the disease can also be transmitted from pregnant women to their infants.
The Importance of Your Liver's Health
Your liver is an important part of your digestive system. In fact, almost everything that enters your body goes through your liver at some point. Your liver is responsible for so many things that any damage to it can cause problems in other parts of your body. That's why a disease such as chronic hepatitis B, which affects the liver, is very serious.
Here's what your liver does:
- Removes harmful substances, called toxins, from the blood
- Stores vitamins, minerals, iron, and sugar
- Enables the body to digest food
- Helps to prevent and fight infection
- Once the hepatitis B virus gets into your blood, it soon begins attacking liver cells
- White blood cells, called lymphocytes, are sent to your liver to fight the virus. This can cause inflammation, or swelling, of the liver
- Inflammation can damage liver cells and lead to scarring of the liver, or fibrosis
- Fibrosis of the liver can lead to severe scarring of the liver, called cirrhosis
- If left untreated, liver failure and liver cancer may develop
ALT (alanine aminotransferase) helps determine whether your liver is damaged or inflamed. Elevated levels of ALT can be a sign of liver damage.
Measuring the level of hepatitis B viral DNA (HBV DNA) is also an important way for your healthcare provider to monitor the effectiveness of your treatment for chronic hepatitis B virus. The presence of HBV DNA can mean the following:
- The hepatitis B virus is multiplying in your body
- You are contagious
- You are at risk for liver damage and may want to consider treatment with medication
Nearly all patients treated with PEGASYS experience one or more side effects. If you do have side effects, you should know that they can become serious, so be sure to speak with your healthcare provider about any side effects you may be experiencing. Even though side effects can become serious, clinical studies show that more than 9 out of 10 patients who received PEGASYS were able to complete treatment.
Note: Any Marines with HBV please let me know by PM and I'll post news for you.
Marines helping Marines
11-19-11, 02:26 AM #110
Sorry about the above type error.
It will take me a few tries to work out the format I want to use.
I decided to go ahead and work on this as it makes me feel better when I feel I'm helping. I need to do something constructive with my time.
News for HCV infected Marines.
Vets get benefits they didn't know they had
By Kyung M. Song
Every month for most of the past decade, Benjamin "Frank" Jordan has forked over as much as $2,000 of his Social Security and veterans benefits to help Medicaid offset the cost of his nursing-home care.
What Jordan didn't know was that he shouldn't have paid a cent.
Jordan, a Navy veteran with a service-connected disability, should have gotten his nursing-home care free from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). Now Jordan, 71, who uses a wheelchair, has his room at a Mercer Island nursing home completely paid for from nearly $40,000 a year in newfound veterans benefits, thanks to a state program that matches poor veterans with thousands of dollars in federal benefits they've missed.
"My husband keeps saying we can spend money now, but I'm still in shock," said Jordan's wife, Loretta, 68, who lives in the couple's home in Bellevue.
The Veterans Enhancement Project, which began in Clark County in 2001, was the first in the nation to use a database, originally created to catch welfare cheats, to stretch Washington's Medicaid budget by finding people eligible for VA benefits instead.
So far it has boosted benefits for more than 300 Medicaid nursing-home patients in Western Washington, officials say. Nearly 40 of those have left Medicaid completely. Another 2,000 vets and their dependents have been enrolled in military health plans.
Are you eligible for VA benefits?
• Generally, honorably discharged veterans who had at least two years of active service can apply to receive medical care from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). The VA may also pay for nursing-home care for veterans with at least 70 percent service-connected disability. Also, veterans who meet income limitations and served at least 90 days of active duty, with at least one day during a period of war (including the beginning of the Gulf War in 1990 to the present) and who are totally disabled or 65 or older can apply to get a VA pension.
• The VA also may pay tax-free disability compensation to veterans who were injured while on active duty or whose conditions were made worse by active military service.
In addition, military retirees and their spouses and children, along with widows or widowers of veterans who died or were disabled by service-related conditions, may be eligible for health-care coverage.
For more information, contact the Veterans Project at the state Department of Health and Social Services, 800-280-0586 or www.aasa.dshs.wa.gov/topics/paris; or contact the state Department of Veterans Affairs at 800-562-2308 or www.dva.wa.gov.
The project, which is now reaching into Eastern Washington and being emulated in other states, saved Washington Medicaid an estimated $3.5 million last fiscal year.
Medicaid, a health-insurance program for the poor, is funded equally by Washington state and the federal government. Medicaid patients can pay certain living expenses with their monthly incomes, but must use any remainder to cover the cost of their nursing-home care. And state law requires Medicaid to recover remaining long-term-care costs — on which it spends more than $1.2 billion a year — from the beneficiaries' estates after they and their spouses die.
11-19-11, 03:12 AM #111
11-19-11, 03:24 AM #112
Information - including, but not limited to - opinions, ideas, materials or speculation, provided on this thread at Leatherneck.com are offered in the spirit of support, and is intended for educational purposes only.
NOTHING in this thread is intended to substitute medical advice. Please, consult a physician regarding the applicability of any opinions or recommendations with respect to your symptoms or medical condition.
Marines Helping Marines
11-19-11, 04:23 AM #113
I've decided to start a Hep C news thread. I now have an ideal of the format I want to use. I'll re-post the above news there and leave this one for us to talk to each other.
Personally I would like to see this moved to a "Marines Only" section as I think more HCV victims would respond. I still have one more post I want here.
You gave me the ideal Ted. I'm working on a in depth post on those damn Jet Guns.
11-20-11, 06:18 PM #114
First let me offer my condolences on your daughter.
I am glad to see that you will receive help from the VA. You should have been helped long ago but better late than never.
The ruling the VA uses on air guns can be found in Study 488. If you google it up you will see the criteria. It is very shortsighted and out of date. let me know how I can help you with your writings.
Do you have an inhaler? are you diagnosed with COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease)?
The doctors may be able to treat you so that you can get into treatment. If not there are new meds in the pipeline.
I've been an advocate for 7-8 years now and believe that within the next 5 years there will be a vaccine and non-interferon treatment. The reason I say this is because there are billions of dollars to be made.
Hang on brother,
11-25-11, 08:20 AM #115
I'm going to wait until the holidays are over to start that new thread. I have a lot of doctor visits and test to deal with just now. It's getting tough to deal with both my problems at the same time. The COPD is the most life threatening at the moment.
They just started giving me Nasonex, as I have allergies and that can trigger COPD exacerbation, and Albuterol inhaler. I have a local VA appointment the 5th when I probably will be put on O2, at least when I sleep. I wake up gasping for air. For the past year I've had swelling ankles, for the past 4 years an irregular heart beat. I know from the internet it's all COPD related. I haven't been able to sleep, also COPD, due to lack of O2. Body twitches, high CO2 blood levels. I haven't noticed the shortness of breath when I talk due to the fact that I live alone and rarely talk, but when I do, I can't finish a sentence without taking a breath. The last two years I only go out to get groceries, about an hour, and that wears me out. I have noticed I can't get to the mail box without stopping and catching my breath. They did a HD CT scan and it confirmed severe COPD. I talked to my primary care doctor on the phone and he said we would discuss it on my next visit. I missed my breathing test due to my son getting called back offshore early. I got a call from the VA telling me I qualify for medical transport for my appointments in New Orleans, I live about 70 north of there. They can't determine what stage I'm in until I do the breathing test. My HCV is now a secondary concern and a complication to my COPD. It's hard to say how long I have to live until I have the breathing test (spirometry). I'm not fooling myself, I know the COPD is fatal. I know its severe so I'm just hoping for a few years but I'm not sure about how bad my heart is, I know it's bad by how often it now skips a beat. That's due to pressure from my lungs, which also causes enlargement of the right ventricle, the side that pumps blood to the lungs.
If I can do anything for you just let me know.
Hang with it, I know it's tough but the Marine Corps gave us the strength to face anything.
Here's some links on COPD. Anyone reading this and recognizes these systems, see your doctor ASAP.
Right-sided heart failure
Backward failure of the right ventricle leads to congestion of systemic capillaries. This generates excess fluid accumulation in the body. This causes swelling under the skin (termed peripheral edema or anasarca) and usually affects the dependent parts of the body first (causing foot and ankle swelling in people who are standing up, and sacral edema in people who are predominantly lying down). Nocturia (frequent nighttime urination) may occur when fluid from the legs is returned to the bloodstream while lying down at night. In progressively severe cases, ascites (fluid accumulation in the abdominal cavity causing swelling) and hepatomegaly (enlargement of the liver) may develop. Significant liver congestion may result in impaired liver function, and jaundice and even coagulopathy (problems of decreased blood clotting) may occur.
11-25-11, 10:27 AM #116
11-26-11, 08:59 AM #117
11-26-11, 09:10 AM #118
I have a copy of an appeal that shows service connection was granted for a tattoo while in service. Thh induction exam showed no tattoo when entering military but did show a tattoo on the discharge exam. These induction and discharge exam reports are in your claims file at VA, it's called a C-File which you can request from the VA. The tattoo will not be found in the medical or sick call report so you will need the induction and discharge exam. the tattoo will be marked in section 39 Marks, Scars Tattoos
If you need more info let me know. Also, if you are housebound you may be entitled to a VA pension without service connection.
11-26-11, 09:22 AM #119
Thanks Brother! I met a doctor in Houston who recommends vitamin supplements, especially massive doses of Vitamin C, for HepC, and I followed his advice. It has been eight years since VA diagnosed me, but I have no ongoing liver issues, and no other real problems that I can tell, or that my primary med doctor can find either.
The VA gives great care, at least in Kansas City. I think some day the VA will start paying for this disease as service connected.
Prayers Brothers. Semper Fi, Tom
11-27-11, 09:56 AM #120
I also am a slow progresser but if I rid myself of the virus I will try. This is my second week of treatment, why cry, we all know it's tough.
Anyway I'm service connected so the VA does pay comp for HCV. If there is something in your medical record that shows that you were exposed to blood via known risk factors then you gualify so long as it is not due to willful misconduct.
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