Home Care Services in Plano, TX – Hepatitis C is on the Rise and Baby Boomers are Encouraged to Get Tested
Mark was born in 1949 and throughout most of his life he was relatively healthy. As he aged, just like almost every other person his age, he began to experience numerous health challenges. The older he got, the more health problems began to show.
It got to the point where he talked to his family about home care services. He knew that some level of assistance was necessary, but he just didn’t know what kind. They eventually settled on a home care aide, somebody to come to his house three days a week and assist him with various tasks around the house.
One day when the experienced in-home care provider visited him, she noticed something about his eyes that caused her concern. She was not a medical professional and could not make any particular diagnosis, but she encouraged him to see his doctor as soon as possible. She noticed a yellowing of his eyes that she recognized to be jaundice.
He visited his doctor and was tested for various blood-borne illnesses. It was discovered that he had hepatitis C. There are approximately 3.2 million Americans that are believed to be infected with this blood-borne virus. Two thirds of that number are thought to be Baby Boomers, those individuals born between 1945 and 1965.
Mark’s doctor told him that there was a push in recent years that every person born between those years be tested for this disease. He informed Mark that millions of people could be infected with hepatitis C and not know it as the disease can take a long time to attack and break down the liver. It is the leading cause of liver transplants in the United States.
The Centers for Disease Control recommended that this age group be tested once they discovered the number of deaths caused by hepatitis C had doubled since the late 1990s. It is estimated that more than 15,000 Americans die each year as a result of hepatitis C.
There are number of potential causes for a person to get hepatitis C, and the most common is sharing needles through illegal drug use. It can also be spread through blood transfusions and the virus wasn’t screened effectively until 1992. Tattoos, piercings, and even shared razor blades and toothbrushes can also spread hepatitis C in some cases.
Anybody who relies on home care services who has not been tested for hepatitis C should be tested so that either treatment can begin or they can know they are safe from this virus.