With the cost of health care and prescription drugs soaring, it’s important to choose health insurance carefully when you take hepatitis B medications and need frequent check-ups and lab tests.
In the next two months, Medicare recipients, people who get insurance through their jobs and consumers buying coverage through the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) will be selecting insurance plans during open enrollment.
If you take antivirals or interferon and have frequent lab tests and doctor visits, it’s important that you select the plan that:
Has your specialist or primary care doctor and lab in its network,
And offers the lowest copay for the drugs you need.
We who live with hepatitis B know that avoiding alcohol and cigarettes go a long way toward reducing our risk of liver cancer. But there are new threats emerging. Researchers are finding that obesity, diabetes and developing fatty liver from unhealthy food and a sedentary lifestyle can be just as dangerous to our livers.
The longer we have hepatitis B, the higher our risk of developing liver cancer. With every decade of life, our liver cancer risk increases 2.7-times, according to a report on Viral Hepatitis in the Elderly published in the American Journal of Gastroenterology.
But current medical guidelines don’t spell out exactly when liver cancer testing should begin in many hepatitis B patients who don’t have liver damage (cirrhosis) or a family history of liver cancer, and are not of Asian or African descent.
Age is clearly an important factor when it comes to liver cancer, “… but current guidelines only provide age-specific recommendations for (liver cancer) surveillance in hepatitis B carriers of Asian ethnicity (men over age 40 and women over age 50),” a team of University of Miami and Veterans Affairs researchers wrote in the journal article. Continue reading "Your Doctor Not Screening You for Liver Cancer? Time for a Talk"→
October is Liver Cancer Awareness Month. Join the Hepatitis B Foundation and the National Viral Hepatitis Roundtable for a twitter chat, featuring hepatitis and liver cancer expert Dr. Robert Gish, at 2p.m. EDT Tuesday, October 20.
Dr. Gish, professor consultant at Stanford University and medical director of the Hepatitis B Foundation and others will be chatting about liver cancer, hepatitis B and C prevention and treatment, health disparities, and resources for awareness and advocacy.
Below are the topics that will be discussed during the chat. Please consider how you might wish to contribute to the conversation! Got any resources you might like to share?
Q1 What is liver cancer and why is it so deadly
Q2 What are the specific risk factors for liver cancer?
Q3 What are some ways to help prevent liver cancer and hepatitis?
Q4 What can be done to help prevent liver cancer for people living with chronic hepatitis B or C?
Q5 What are the health disparities related to liver cancer and viral hepatitis?
Q6 What can we do to raise awareness of viral hepatitis and liver cancer?
Q7 What additional resources are available to learn more about viral hepatitis and liver cancer?
Join the conversation with the hashtag #Liverchat
Confirmed participants and handles for the chat include:
Hepatitis B Foundation – @hepbfoundation
National Viral Hepatitis Roundtable – @NVHR1
Dr. Robert Gish – tweeting from @LiverCancerConn
CDC’s, Division of Viral Hepatitis – @cdchep
CDC National Prevention Information Network – @CDCNPIN
Hep B United – @HepBUnited
American Liver Foundation – @liverUSA
Association of Asian Pacific Community Health Organizations – @HepBPolicy
Latino Commission on AIDS – @LatinoCommAIDS
Charles B Wang Community Health Center – @CBWCHC
Caring Ambassadors – @CAP_HepatitisC
Coalition Against Hepatitis For People of African Origin – @CHIPO_HBV
National Black Leadership Coalition on AIDS – @NBLCA
National Association of County & City Health Officials – @NACCHOalerts
Asian Health Coalition – @AAPInews
Asian American Community Health – @apcaaz
International Community Health Services – @supportichs
Prevent Cancer Foundation – @PreventCancer
Hep B United Philadelphia – @HepBUnitedPhila
Hep Free NYC – @HepFreeNYC
We’d love to hear from you at firstname.lastname@example.org if you plan to participate or have any questions about joining!
October is Liver Cancer Awareness Month. It may be a sleeper of a event when compared to other health campaigns, but for us who live with viral hepatitis, it’s an uncomfortable but critical reminder of the importance of monitoring our liver health to prevent cancer.
Viral hepatitis, especially B and C, are viral infections that can cause liver cancer (also called hepatocellular carcinoma or HCC.) Researchers are still studying why some people are more prone to liver cancer, but we who live with chronic hepatitis B or C have a 25 to 40 percent lifetime risk of developing liver cancer. The infection, which hijacks our liver cells to manufacture more virus, causes inflammation, scarring and even cancer as the liver cells grow out of control.