I'm sorry to hear that you and your husband are having to deal with difficulties. I hope that he is a proactive patient and has watchful doctors! I know how heartbreaking it is to hear that a loved one has cirrhosis.
Although hemochromatosis and hepatitis C both affect the liver, one disease does not cause the other. Hep C is an infectious disease acquired through bloodborne contact, whereas hemochromatosis is an inherited genetic condition passed from parent to child. (In your husband's case, he has two diseases operating independently of each other but affecting the same organ.) Hep C has the potential for cure, but management of the infection is nil to none. Hemochromatosis can often be managed with correct nutrition and careful iron monitoring, but not 'cured' since it is due to inborn gene variations.
It's very important that your husband be under the care of an experienced hepatologist and understands the importance of checking and maintaining manageable iron levels. (No red meat, no alcohol, no cereal fortified with iron, etc..) Keep in mind that many people can live years with cirrhosis -- don't lose hope. Welcome to the forum, keep learning and reading, and I hope you find information here that helps you and your husband.
I have / had porphyria PCT which is a lot like hemochromatosis, my porphyria was caused by the hep C but I'm not real sure about the hemo..... Have the doctors mentioned phlebotomy? It isn't fun but it gets the iron down. Also I met a guy with hemo..... and he said that he felt much better after the blood letting and could actually tell when he needed it done after the docs got it under control. Good Luck
Welcome, I went to pubmed and ran a simple search with hcv AND hemochrotosis and the first clip that came up was similiar to what you asked. Bottom line is unfortunetly with his genetic makeup the liver disease has hit him very hard, at least that's the highest probability. I'm a bit surprised that he wasn't given a clear cut heads up. That is why it is extremely important to see the very best Heptologist that you can, as fast as you can. I hope he is seeing the very best now. I didn't realize how important it was and I wasted alot of years with a GI who didn't know didley squat and didn't want to be bothered with txing me. True story. Sorry for your difficulties have you checked out clinicaltrials.gov? God Bless
Co-factors in liver disease: The role of HFE-related hereditary hemochromatosis and iron.
Wallace DF, Subramaniam VN.
Membrane Transport Laboratory, The Queensland Institute of Medical Research, 300 Herston Road, Herston, Brisbane, QLD 4006, Australia.
The severity of liver disease and its presentation is thought to be influenced by many host factors. Prominent among these factors is the level of iron in the body. The liver plays an important role in coordinating the regulation of iron homeostasis and is involved in regulating the level of iron absorption in the duodenum and iron recycling by the macrophages. Iron homeostasis is disturbed by several metabolic and genetic disorders, including various forms of hereditary hemochromatosis. This review will focus on liver disease and how it is affected by disordered iron homeostasis, as observed in hereditary hemochromatosis and due to HFE mutations. The types of liver disease covered herein are chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection, alcoholic liver disease (ALD), non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), end-stage liver disease, hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and porphyria cutanea tarda (PCT).
PMID: 18848602 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]