Understanding NAFLD and NASH

Guest blog by: Monica Morgan, Pharm.D., CSP As a specialty pharmacy that works with many patients during treatment for liver diseases, it’s not surprising that questions about nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) come up in our line of work. Although hepatitis C is our primary liver focus, both hepatitis C and NAFLD rank as the…

Coffee: Pour Another Cup, Guilt-Free

Coffee is not only a welcome way that 54% of Americans start their day, it also offers liver benefits to coffee fans. I have shared good news about coffee and liver health in several past blogs, including last year’s The Buzz of Caffeine in which coffee’s ability to protect against liver cancer was discussed. Now…

Longevity After Hepatitis C Treatment

Before direct-acting antiviral medications came on the scene for treating hepatitis C, this disease was often a death sentence for patients who progressed to liver failure or liver cancer. However, over the past few years the newly available treatment options now mean that more than 90% of patients with hepatitis C can be cured of…

Managing Hepatitis C Treatment Costs

Manufacturer coupons for high-cost medications, such as those that treat hepatitis C, make a huge difference for patients. Today’s hepatitis C medications have the potential to cure the majority of infected people; however, they can come with a steep price tag for both patients and payers. In order to bring down excessively high cost shares…

The Changing Face of Liver Cancer

Hepatitis C infections get a lot of bad press when it comes to liver cancer. While it is true that hepatitis C is a significant risk factor for liver cancer, there is another risk factor that is even more risky: metabolic disorders. In fact, new research just found that metabolic disorders are the number one…

Get Screened, Get Treated, Save Lives

New options in treating – and curing – almost all cases of hepatitis C infection have been cause for celebration over the past few years. Yet, this is not the time to let our guard down. Recently the Annual Report to the Nation on the Status of Cancer, which is a joint project from the…

The Hepatitis C-Parkinson’s Disease Link

An estimated 3.5 million Americans have chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection, a contagious liver disease that can lead to cirrhosis and/or liver cancer. Meanwhile, an estimated one million Americans live with the progressive movement disorder of Parkinson’s disease. For the first time, research indicates that these two conditions could be linked. With Parkinson’s disease,…

New Hepatitis C Combo On the Way

Another once-daily pill is on-track for approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of hepatitis C, adding to the growing number of treatment options for this life-threatening disease. This time, it’s a combination of Sovaldi® (sofosbuvir) with a new NS5A inhibitor called velpatasvir from Gilead Sciences. The sofosbuvir-velpatasvir combination is…

The True Cost

Infection with the hepatitis C virus (HCV) remains a leading cause of liver cancer in the United States. Treatments now available for HCV can cure upwards of 90% of patients; however, the high price tag of these HCV treatments can serve as an obstacle to these medications reaching all infected people. Yet, there is a…

The Next Wave of Hepatitis C

Despite a few years of good news with hepatitis C – with several new medications bringing cure rates up to 99% – there is also some bad news that must be acknowledged. Hepatitis C infection rates are actually rising in certain populations. The most at-risk population experiencing this hepatitis C spread is that of young,…

Timely Treatment

When one analyzes the medical records of 1.6 American adults, it turns out there’s a lot to be learned there. Researchers with the Chronic Hepatitis Cohort Study (CHeCS) did just that starting back in 2006 and tracked the ongoing health of those with hepatitis for the next numerous years. As the CHeCS researchers uncovered connections…

World Hepatitis Day

One of the key messages of today July 28th, World Hepatitis Day, is simply this: hepatitis C is a preventable and treatable disease. The World Health Organization created World Hepatitis Day to raise awareness about the massive number of people already infected with one of several hepatitis viruses, including the hepatitis C, and how anyone…

The Buzz of Caffeine

Coffee brings a variety of health benefits. For the sake of your liver, it’s not just coffee but any form of caffeine that provides a “perk,” so to speak. Readers might recall several of my past blogs touching on the benefits of coffee for those with hepatitis C. Past research shows that coffee slows disease…

Going Against the Grain

Walk the aisles of nearly any major grocery store and sooner or later you’ll cross paths with a “gluten-free” section. Some nutrition experts now suggest that gluten is not only harmful to those with celiac disease, but could also cause trouble for people fighting hepatitis C. Gluten is a protein found in wheat (and similar…

After the Cure, Expect Many Years

Life after hepatitis C can be sweet, indeed. A patient who achieves a sustained viral response (SVR), which is another term meaning they are cured of the hepatitis C infection, can expect a lifespan just as long as someone who never had this disease. The year just keeps getting better and better for those with…

Treat Hepatitis C Promptly For Your Liver…And Your Heart

As if it’s not bad enough to have chronic hepatitis C infection, with the damage that brings to the liver, it seems that the hepatitis C virus (HCV) also brings other health risks. Naga Pothineni, M.D. from the Division of Cardiology at the University of Arkansas for Medical Science and fellow researchers looked into the…

Give Your Liver a Cup of Coffee

Coffee, one of the world’s most popular drinks, can be pretty healthy for your liver. As Dr. Nick Maroulis, Director of Pharmacy at BioPlus Specialty Pharmacy, recently mentioned in a guest blog, The New Hepatitis C Era, there is a growing body of evidence showing that coffee can slow disease progression in chronic liver disease,…

Thinking Outside the Liver

When you hear the disease “hepatitis C,” you most likely think of the liver. It makes sense, since the liver is ground zero of hepatitis C viral damage. However, about three-quarters of people infected with the hepatitis C virus (HCV) will also have symptoms beyond their livers. The best documented non-liver problem caused by hepatitis…