Saturday, February 21, 2009

Good News from Liver Biopsy Results

It's only a flare-up of Hep C! Yeah!

My transplant coordinator called yesterday and told me that my elevated liver enzymes are a result of a flare-up of Hepatitis C and are NOT related to any sort of organ rejection. Whew! We're relieved; it's never great to have elevated liver enzymes, but it's less bad (?huh?) to have a flare-up than to experience rejection and have to take steroids.

That's the good news. So, why the flare-up and what can I do to help prevent them? Focus on and improve my metabolic condition - eat healthily, lose weight (gasp - 30 pounds), get some exercise, control my blood sugar and manage my stress. These things I can do. It will also help reduce my steatosis, which is fat in the liver (mine has increased a lot since my last biopsy in June 2008 - fatty liver is NOT good, especially when you have Hep C). This just sounds gross, doesn't it? Ack!

In A Guide to Understanding Hepatitis C at, the link between stress and Hep C flare-ups is explained:
Controlling stress is a major factor in managing HCV disease. Living with a chronic disease is stressful. Many people report 'flare-ups' (periods of increased symptoms) following episodes of stress. Exercise, meditation, and time management can all help reduce stress. Try to maintain a realistic picture of your health and a positive attitude. Understanding the severity of your liver disease is an important part of having a realistic picture of your condition.

Financial strains have created an unbelievable amount of stress for my husband and me during the past year (well, more like two years - however, the stress has been truly difficult for the last six months). If stress causes flare-ups, then I came by mine honestly. I also had a flare-up last October/November. Hhmm. I need to consider meditating again.

This week was a challenge, to say the least. Thanks for your prayers.