Hepatitis C: Post Treatment Issues Community
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7469840 tn?1409845836

Osteoporosis and HCV Post Tx

Hi All, So my fellow Hepper and good friend AlmostSixty said her HepC doctor had ordered a dexascan for her because HepC Tx can affect the bones. And so I requested one, and got a call today that I have osteoporosis. I don't have any numbers, and will be meeting with my new Medicare GP later this week. I am a 65 year-old woman, I walk a vigorous 2.5 miles 3 times a week, just hiked 18 miles at the Grand Canyon, how can this be? So I am not sure if it is a result of Tx, or just getting old. Anyone else hear of this? I may check to see of there is a forum on this too.
12 Responses
2059648 tn?1439766665
There seems to be a connection to those who have cirrhosis.  I did find the below study that claims there is no connection to those with health diets, chronic hepatitis C and a good functioning liver absent cirrhosis.  


7469840 tn?1409845836
Umm, well that is not me, I don't have cirrhosis. Thank you.
1815939 tn?1377991799
There are many things that can contribute to developing Osteoporosis, including something as simple as drinking carbonated beverages. Early menopause, drinking alcohol, steroids, age, diet, genetics, activity level, etc. can all contribute to Osteoporosis.

My suggestion would be to see an Endocrinologist and have him/her manage the Osteoporosis.

When my orthopedic doctor noticed my spine was demineralizing, he told me to call an endocrinologist and make an appt. to see him. He gave me his name and I made an appt. This definitely one of the best things I have ever done.

I did not yet have Osteoporosis yet, but I was borderline. He started me on a regimen of weekly Estrogen patch, weekly Fosamax, and Citracal Plus D. It took a few years, but I am now back up to normal bone density.  

I would not trust just any old Family Practive doctor or PCP. You want someone who specializes in Osteoporosis and who will tailor the treatment to you.

Best of luck.
7469840 tn?1409845836
Thanks pooh, I will see if I can get a referral to a Navy Endrocrinologist. Unfortunately I am just transitioning into Medicare, but with Tricare, so have to jump through hoops. I want to be informed about options for Tx for it.
7469840 tn?1409845836
I just googled ribavirin and osteoporosis, and there does seem to some connection, so will try to print out some articles for new doc, and will take all my hcv tx info with me too.
7469840 tn?1409845836
So 2.4 for lower lumbar spine, 2.3 for right hip means osteopenia, pre-osteoporosis. 2.8 in left hip means osteoporosis. So new doc is putting me on Fosamax, calcium and Vitamin D, says it takes 1.5-2 years to regrow bone. I keep telling myself it is better than having hcv!
2059648 tn?1439766665
If your low in vitamin D.....just taking that will make you feel better.  Wow you can regrow bone? You are better off without Hepatitis C.  I have been reading about all the things that are connected to having hepatitis C.   I'm flabbergasted that anyone would hesitate treating there hepatitis C.   The longer you have hepatitis C....the more time hep c has to make havic on your body.  
7469840 tn?1409845836
Not sure if it is really growing bone, but rather putting back calcium into the bone so it is not so thin. I feel so thankful to AlmostSixty for telling me her hcv doc had ordered the dexascan, she saved my bones! Yes the hepatitis C is insidious, so glad it is gone, these other things are so minor by comparison. I think that the anemia of Tx may have contributed a lot to it, on top of being an older woman. Who knows? The issue is now to treat the bone loss. I met and like my new Medicare GP, she seemed aware of the new hcv Tx. She could see I was on top of my medical stuff, I brought my huge hcv folder in with me. She has ordered a more complete blood panerl, so that should be interesting, will do that next week. It will be interesting to see if I can tolerate the Fosamax. Thanks for your support. Wish I had know about this possible Sx while treating, maybe could have taken Vit D and calcium to stop it.
Avatar universal
My dexa said I have osteopenia and so I started reading the osteoporosis forum over at Inspire. There was a lot of discussion about whether or not to take Fosamax. Personally, I won't but then I also have cirrhosis.
7469840 tn?1409845836
So my Vitamin D was really low, 23.28, should be at least 30. Calcium was a little low, was 8.7, should be at least 8.9. Great news was ALT was 7, AST was 17, so both low, only other number off was Eosinophils which was high, was 6.5, should be 6 or below. That is related to allergies, which I have. So hopefully we have caught the osteoporosis in time, and only have to be on fosamax for a year or two. We will do another bone screening in a year. The fosamax is affecting my ear buzzing too, so really don't want to be on it longer than necessary.
Avatar universal
I just found out my vitamin D was lower than six months ago when it was already low. My doctor said cirrhosis can cause vitamin D depletion. So, this would be a link to cirrhosis and osteoporosis and osteoarthritis. I only gave osteopenia with regard to osteoporosis but also have osteoarthritis everywhere. I'd ask to have your levels checked before adding in a supplement though.
7469840 tn?1409845836
See my levels above. I am taking calcium and Vitamin D now. I didn't have cirrhosis, and never had high liver levels. So assume it is a combination of being an older woman and treatment last year. So like you will watch my levels and bone density.
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