Why bother with treatment?

Why Bother With HCV Treatment

Why bother with Hepatitis C treatment? I hear this all the time from readers who just found out they have the virus. They say things like:

But I don’t feel sick.

I don’t have any symptoms.

My doctor said it’s ok to wait.

To some, getting treated for Hepatitis C feels like a waste of time.

It kind of makes sense. I mean, some people may think of HCV treatment as an elective surgery, like a nose job. However, would you have surgery to stop the bleeding and rebuild your face if you get facial injuries that crush your nose and cheekbones? There is no longer a choice, right? It could shorten your life.

Would you get rid of a virus that was multiplying by the millions? Well, if the virus replicated in your liver, yes you would! As long as you have HCV, it is reproducing at a fast pace 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. There is not a thing you can do to slow down the process. The ability of the virus to reproduce has to be stopped. That is what treatment does. It stops the virus from having a feast on your liver.

This is important, because the reproducing activity causes scarring in your liver. Picture it red, angry, swollen, and hot. Some scarring, or fibrosis, is also created by dead liver cells. As the virus kills these hepatocytes, it signals your liver to try and heal itself. The healing process is called cirrhosis. The longer your body tries to heal the liver, the more cirrhotic tissue is formed.

The process of scarring can take years and no one can determine how long it takes for a person to develop liver disease. Factors such as genetics, diet, and lifestyle all come into play.

Take my story: I lived a super charged healthy and active lifestyle. It included a fairly organic diet. I had a slight addiction to exercise and yoga. These things were in my favor as far as my general health and energy level was concerned. However, they did not stop the virus from replicating. I rode my bike in triple digit heat one day and my liver failed the next. The Hepatitis C Virus has silently destroyed my liver over the years without warning.

I immediately wanted to treat but was denied because my liver and other organs were in trouble. My doctors and I spent a year getting my body in good enough shape to take the new drugs. Thankfully they worked and I am now Hepatitis C free. Unfortunately, the damage is done and I still live with end stage cirrhosis.

Getting cured of a life threatening virus that silently destroys your liver is not an elective medical procedure. No one gets by for long with Hepatitis C. It destroys your liver. With the medications available today, there are not a lot of valid reasons to postpone treatment. If you have HCV, ask your doctor how soon you can start.

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