Hepatitis C is an insidious infection that attacks the liver quietly and relentlessly for decades. Doctors are using World Hepatitis Day today as a reminder for people to consider testing for the disease.
If you’re a baby boomer born between 1945 and 1965, you should get tested for Hepatitis C. That’s the recommendation of the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force.
Many Americans have the potentially life-threatening condition and don’t know it. "There are probably up to two to three million people who are infected," stated Barbara Turner, MD, physician researcher at UT Health San Antonio.
Turner is part of a group encouraging primary doctors to test more people for Hep C in Texas. In the last five years, more than 35,000 Texas baby boomers got the blood test. More than a thousand were diagnosed with the liver disease and treated.
The good news is there’s a new pill regimen that has a very high cure rate.
"It gets rid of the infection in over 90 percent of people. It’s incredibly successful. It’s a very different story than it used to be even eight years ago," Turner explained.