Hepatitis “C” Forum in Mexicali on Feb. 28

The XXIIth Legislature of Baja California, through the Health Commission chaired by Deputy Miguel Osuna Millán, together with the Civil Association United for a Better Life, convene the Hepatitis C Dialogue Panel, on Wednesday, February 28, 2018 of 9 : 00 a.12: 30 a.m. in the Women’s Room for Democracy in the Legislative Power building, in Mexicali, where a group of medical specialists and authorities will talk about the detection, treatment and social reach of this disease that has reached serious figures of infected patients recently in Baja California.

The incidence of Hepatitis C in Baja California is 10 times higher than that in the rest of the country, the world population with this chronic infection is 71 million people and the Secretariat of Baja California reported that in 2007 there were more than 3 thousand patients infected with this virus, incidence 10 times higher than the national average, a disease for which there is no vaccine, and scientific research in this field continues.

“In Baja California, 80% of drug users are infected. The treatment was initially treated with drugs called Interferon and Ribavirin, at IMSS Social Security clinics and also in the Issstecali, but cured 50% or 60% of the patients were cured”, said Dr. Miriam Castellot from Unidos por una vida Mejor AC.

About Hepatitis C

Hepatitis C is an infectious disease caused by the hepatitis C virus (HCV) that primarily affects the liver. During the initial infection people often have mild or no symptoms. Occasionally a fever, dark urine, abdominal pain, and yellow tinged skinoccurs. The virus persists in the liver in about 75% to 85% of those initially infected. Early on chronic infection typically has no symptoms. Over many years however, it often leads to liver disease and occasionally cirrhosis. In some cases, those with cirrhosis will develop complications such as liver failure, liver cancer, or dilated blood vessels in the esophagus and stomach.

HCV is spread primarily by blood-to-blood contact associated with intravenous drug use, poorly sterilized medical equipment, needlestick injuries in healthcare, and transfusions.

Using blood screening, the risk from a transfusion is less than one per two million. It may also be spread from an infected mother to her baby during birth. It is not spread by superficial contact. It is one of five known hepatitis viruses: A, B, C, D, and E. Diagnosis is by blood testing to look for either antibodies to the virus or its RNA. Testing is recommended in all people who are at risk.

There is no vaccine against hepatitis C. Prevention includes harm reduction efforts among people who use intravenous drugs and testing donated blood.

Source: Grupo de Autoyuda Unidos por una vida Mejor AC.

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