Dating with hepatitis

Bottom line, the investigators determined, “The prevailing view that the North American epidemic is predominately attributable to past sporadic risky behaviors is not supported by our data.” Separating HCV from the stigma could lead more baby boomers to follow the CDC’s recommendation that anyone born from 1945 through 1965 get tested for hepatitis C.

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The research is further proof that anyone born between 19 should be tested for HCV, even if they feel like they've never been at risk. Julio Montaner from the British Columbia Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS partnered with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to investigate why 75 percent of the up to 6 million adults living with Hep C in North America were born between 19.

“The theory was that in North America the hepatitis C epidemic in baby boomers was due to some behavioral indiscretions that generation had in their younger years,” Montaner said in a statement to the press.

According to AIDSmap, the scientists analyzed 45,316 sequences of HCV genotype 1a, the most common strain, and then utilized a technique called phylogenetic analysis to focus on five HCV genes and trace the dynamics of the HCV epidemic.

The results indicate that 1948 to 1963 saw the greatest expansion of the HCV epidemic, which the authors note is “substantially earlier than previously suggested.” That timeline suggests the epidemic had its roots in World War II, when lifesaving battlefield medical procedures (like blood transfusions and various injections, including immunizations) combined with the global flow of troops to help the disease spread.

Vaccines are available for both hepatitis A and B if screening shows you haven't been exposed to these viruses.

Request testing for HIV, syphilis and hepatitis if you: Your doctor tests you for syphilis by taking either a blood sample or a swab from any genital sores you might have. A blood sample is taken to test for HIV and hepatitis.

Chlamydia and gonorrhea screening is done either through a urine test or through a swab inside the penis in men or from the cervix in women. Screening is important, because if you don't have signs or symptoms, you can be unaware that you have either infection.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) encourages HIV testing, at least once, as a routine part of medical care if you're an adolescent or adult between the ages of 15 and 65.

Prior to 1950, doctors typically used glass and metal syringes, which were washed, disinfected, and reused.

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