Hepatitis C

Some veterans say they contracted hepatitis from the "jet gun" that was used to immunize them in the Vietnam era, but researchers haven't proven that link.

Alix Poulot (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0) / Flickr http://bit.ly/2wDIrOL

An estimated 4 million people in the United States have hepatitis C, but most people who have the virus may not know they have it because the disease shows almost no symptoms. 

The Vietnam War ended more than 40 years ago, but it continues to claim military lives. Nearly every spring new names are etched into the black granite walls of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., which pays tribute to the more than 58,000 service members who lost their lives.

Flickr user @doug88888 / cc

The big story, the one that made news directors perk up their ears, made congressmen call hearings, and made jaws drop across the country was the story about a 62 year-old drug - a senior citizen of a drug - called Daraprim that overnight went from $13.50 a tablet to $750 a tablet. A 5000% increase for no other reason than a company called Turing Pharmaceuticals bought the drug and raised the price because it could.

UT Health Science Center

Today, Monday, July 28, is World Hepatitis Day and a local researcher has published a paper about a cure for Hepatitis C that he says is different and more available than a previous cure announced earlier this year.

The World Hepatitis Day website has a fun little diddy with hand puppets singing about the very serious disease. The song says viral hepatitis kills 1.5 million people around the world each year, the same number that die from HIV and AIDS.

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