Alternative Therapies Helping the Fight Against Mesothelioma

Alternative therapies are misunderstood. The truth is that alternative therapies are the therapies of the future. They simply haven’t entered mainstream medicine yet. For incurable and aggressive cancers like mesothelioma, alternative therapies are the key to the future. Survivors like Paul Kraus have utilized alternative therapies to extend their lifespans. Paul has survived for 21 years with the disease, which makes him the longest survivor in history. These are the alternative therapies that have been the most effective at beating mesothelioma, and you can find more information at: www.survivingmesothelioma.com.

1. Ozone Therapy

It’s believed that highly oxygenated blood is effective at killing cancer cells. It’s also true that high levels of oxygen can help them grow. That’s why people have previously dismissed ozone therapy.

Traditional ozone therapy doesn’t work, but there are many types of ozone therapy. Through empowering white blood cells with high levels of oxygen, it’s possible to overcome the growth of new tumors. Studies have already shown that new ozone therapies have a lot of potential.

2. Vitamin C Therapy

Vitamin C therapy has been making the rounds in therapeutic circles for years. A lack of evidence meant that mainstream medicine dismissed the idea of using Vitamin C therapy. Yet new studies have demonstrated that this type of therapy works when it comes to attacking cancer cells. The reason for this is that Vitamin C boosts the immune system and promotes collagen growth. This is the equivalent of reinforcing your bones, muscles, and blood vessels. Your body becomes more resistant to the invading cancer cells.

3. Acupuncture

Traditional Chinese medicine promotes acupuncture as a way of relieving stress. Look at the research and acupuncture is a proven way of eliminating stress and additional pain caused by conventional cancer treatment. Another study shows that acupuncture stops cancer patients from vomiting. When combined with other treatments, acupuncture keeps the body strong and increases the chances of beating mesothelioma.

4. Meditation

Meditation is practiced by everyone from spiritualists to corporate CEOS. And there’s a reason for that. Those who meditate are less likely to experience stress and anxiety. It’s positive for mental health.

Cancer patients are more likely to suffer from mental health problems. That could all change through meditation. By preventing mental illness, you’ll be able to tackle mesothelioma head on.

5. Immunotherapy

Immunotherapy is breaking new ground. Scientists are studying cancer vaccines for patients who already have cancer. It’s changing this field from preventative to a real treatment. The theory behind it is that the body will be better able to resist a cancer it already has. The primary treatment is a doctor provides a vaccine with weakened cancer cells already inside. Your white blood cells then train themselves to fight that specific type of cancer.

Last Word – Changing the Lives of Mesothelioma Patients

These alternative mesothelioma treatments are increasing the chances of patients beating their prognoses. The results are backed up by real scientific evidence and people like Paul Kraus are living proof that they do work.

Which alternative therapy are you most interested in?

Tips For A Speedy Recovery After A Lengthy Illness

It is a fantastic feeling to finally recover from an illness which has sidelined you for a while, but, unfortunately, you cannot spring right back into action. Illness can take its toll and especially when it has lasted a long time, so although you will be raring to get your life back on track, you may suffer from exhaustion and find that your general physical and perhaps mental health has deteriorated. This will come back with time, but here are a few ways that you can speed up the process so that you can start leading your normal day to day life once again.

Stay Hydrated

Illnesses can leave you dehydrated, so be sure to drink plenty of fluids throughout the day to rehydrate and flush out toxins. It is said that you should drink around 3 liters of water a day, so make sure you are drinking at least this amount whilst recovering and steer clear of anything that could dehydrate you, such as alcohol, sugary drinks or coffee.

Food

So-called “superfoods” can do a world of good when you are on the mend as they are rich in vitamins, nutrients, and antioxidants to give you plenty of energy. Fresh fruit and vegetables are helpful for boosting your immune system and fighting off secondary infections, so stock up on plenty of these. It is worth noting that if you have suffered from a stomach or intestinal illness, it is best to stick to food which is easy to digest, such as toast, bananas or rice.

Exercise

Jumping right back into your exercise regime is not a great idea, although this is what you will want to do. However, moderate exercise is important after an illness because it will release endorphins that will speed up your recovery. Always listen to your body and gradually increase the level of exercise until you get to your usual level.

Prescriptions

Just because you are feeling better does not mean that the bacteria or virus has completely gone. It is for this reason why you must always finish a prescription even if you feel much, much better. If it has been a serious illness, it is worth following up with your doctor to see if you need a repeat prescription or if there is any other medicine that you could be taking to boost your recovery. Pharmacy automation is being used in many pharmacies today which can make visiting much quicker, easier and straightforward than before.

Rest

Although it may feel like all you have done is rest, your body will need to recharge after fighting off the illness so be sure to take it easy until your energy levels rise. Get plenty of sleep but try to maintain a regular sleeping pattern so that you do not suffer when you return to work.

Long illnesses can have a huge impact on your physical and mental wellbeing, so it is important that you look after yourself when you are on the mend and ease your way back into your daily life.

Three Effective at Home Remedies to Banish Warts

Warts are one of those things that, although common in adults and kids, can cause a fair amount of embarrassment and even discomfort depending on where they are located. These small growths have a rough texture to them and can pop up anywhere on your body. They tend to look like a small blister but can grow in size. Doctors know that they are caused by a virus that is part of the human papillomavirus (HPV) group, and that they can appear at any time and then go away on their own with no rhyme or reason to it.

Rather than wait and hope that the wart goes away on its own, there are some treatment methods that you can use that can help banish them. Here’s a look at five effective at home remedies that could be worth giving a try.

Apple Cider Vinegar

One of the most common at-home wart remedies you’ll come across is apple cider vinegar. This vinegar is readily available, in fact you may have some in your cupboard right now. The way it works is that the vinegar starts to attack the flesh of the wart thanks to its acidic makeup. Over time the wart will diminish and hopefully go away all together.

Simply take a cotton ball and soak it in apple cider vinegar, squeeze out the extra liquid, and then place it over the wart. You can then use surgical tape to keep it in place. Ideally you will want to leave it on overnight as long as it doesn’t hurt. The process should take one to two weeks.

Honey

According to Healthrow.Net, honey can be another home remedy for warts that is extremely effective. For this method you will need to apply a thick layer of honey directly on the wart and then wrap the area with a bandage, making sure to cover it well. The bandage should be left in place for 24 hours and then removed. This process can be repeated until the wart disappears. Honey’s natural antiviral and antibacterial properties are what make this an effective treatment.

Vitamin C

You can also try making your own vitamin C paste that can be applied to your wart. To make a paste, take a vitamin C chewable tablet and put it in water or lemon juice to create a paste. Use just a small amount of liquid. Once the paste is ready, you can paint it on the wart and then cover it with a bandage. Just like with the other methods, this can be done on a daily basis until the wart is gone.

Many Other Home Remedies

This is just a very small look at the many home remedies that exist for clearing up warts. Other items that have shown to be beneficial include banana peels, basil, milkweed, garlic, and pineapple juice. So rather than feel embarrassed or in discomfort due to your wart, you may want to give one of these home remedies a try.

How To Stay Healthy During Seasonal Change

A change in the seasons can pose a whole range of health and wellness issues that you may not even be aware of, despite your best intentions to eat well, sleep enough hours a night and get active. No matter how fit you are, or even if you think that you are in the best of shape, you are still at risk from seasonal illnesses and bugs that can wipe you out for days and weeks, leaving you feeling drained and tired. So, if the change in seasons sees you fall ill, then this year it is time to make a change for the better, and make sure that you are prepared and stocked up – just in case.

First and foremost, if you know that you always get ill when the seasons are changing then take preventative measures and be sure to book in for a checkup or appointment with your doctor or at your local health center. If you suffer from any aches or muscle pains, then consider making an appointment with flexcare physio to ensure that you are in tip-top health. Be sure to involve your kids, or elderly relatives too, so that you can rest assured that your entire family is prepared and safe. If a complaint, such as asthma runs in your family, then it is vital that you make an appointment as soon as possible. Remember that the quicker you act, the less likely that you or a relative are likely to fall seriously ill. So, no matter if you think that you only have a tickly cough, be sure to schedule in for your check-up so that you are ready just in case.

Eat and drink for the season

If you are keen not to fall ill and remain healthy during seasonal change, then you need to make sure that your diet reflects this. Be sure to eat for the season and stock up on local, seasonal produce – your bank balance will also thank you for this too, as this will cost you a lot less than your usual imported fruit and vegetables. If you suffer from hay fever, then buying seasonal honey can do the trick! Now that summer is on the way, be sure to fill your diet and shopping cart with fresh berries and fruits, that will boost your antioxidant and vitamin levels across your body and help with your overall immune system maintenance. Do not forget the leafy, green vegetables either, as these will provide essential sources of fiber and keep your digestive system working optimally. Finally, if you eat a lot of meat and fish then try to buy organic or grass fed over mass-produced sources. Try not to eat meat or fish every day, and opt for vegetarian and vegan options where possible to ensure that you consume a colorful and varied diet. Embrace the best that the season has to offer you, and you are less likely to suffer from those pesky seasonal bugs.

Rest up and drink up

If you want to ensure that you remain in optimal health now that the seasons are changing, then you need to make sure that you get enough sleep and stay hydrated. It might sound like an unusual combination but ensure that you get enough shuteye is beneficial for your entire body as lots of vital processes that your system needs to function and renew happen overnight. From burning fat to cell rejuvenation and your digestion, failing to get enough sleep can make you feel groggy, grumpy and upset as your body will be struggling to cope with managing these processes on top of your day today. So, if you struggle to relax and unwind, make sure that you remove any distractions from your bedrooms such as your cell phone and tablet, and switch the light off early – so that you fall into a deep, relaxing slumber. If you struggle to get all your fluids in or are a self-confessed caffeine addict, then this could be damaging your adrenal glands and affecting your mood and tiredness levels also. Be sure to keep a bottle to hand and make sure that you sip on herbal tea and water throughout the day, to ensure that you remain hydrated. Water is a better option than fruit juices, as it is calorie and sugar-free, plus it benefits your entire body. So get drinking and try to improve your hydration levels as this will keep you fighting fit and illness free.

Be aware of the illnesses around

If you want to ensure that you, your kids and your relatives do not fall ill, then you also need to make sure that you are aware of the illnesses and common complaints that are most common during this time of year. From food poisoning to hay fever and even coughs or the common cold, make sure that you visit the doctor or pharmacy if you feel that you are falling ill and make sure that you stay home and rest – as you will also prevent any germs from spreading around your workplace. Make sure that you wash your hands after visiting the bathroom and after you have prepared food. Also, ensure that any produce in your refrigerator is in date and has not gone off.  Taking these precautions will ensure that you are less likely to fall ill.

If you find yourself suffering during seasonal change, and are usually struck down by illness or common complaints as the weather improves, then make sure that this year you take the right measures to keep you in good health. Schedule a health check and be sure to fill your refrigerator with seasonal fruit, vegetables and buy organic meat and fish where possible. Try to up your fluid levels by drinking enough water and be sure to get a good night’s sleep, by removing distractions from your bedroom. Finally, follow good practices and remain aware of any illnesses that are currently rife in your workplace or at your kids’ school. Stay home if you are sick and take time to rest up and recuperate.

How To Deal With Seasonal Allergies

Allergies make people miserable no matter what the causes that trigger them are. Some are allergic to dust and pillow puff, while others are allergic to pollen and know exactly what hay fever feels like. In any case, seasonal allergies affect millions of people all over the world each year. Moreover, due to climate change, the number of sufferers is constantly rising. They ruin important events, and they make people feel miserable for a few days or even weeks. The most common symptoms are a runny nose, itchy eyes, and congestion which takes a toll on people’s life. They are usually triggered by the immune system that responds to pollen produced by plants.

Everyone who suffers from seasonal allergies knows that it is impossible to get through this difficult season without medicine. As it is impossible to avoid pollen and flowers or fresh cut grass, it is necessary to learn how to minimize the symptoms and make the whole experience a bit more acceptable. Luckily, there are many useful methods of doing that. These tips are relevant for people of all ages as hay fever can strike anybody, regardless of their age. Therefore, this is good knowledge to have whether you are a sufferer or want to help someone in need.

Know Your Allergy Triggers

In order to be able to find the most suitable treatment method for you, it is fundamental to learn what triggers your allergy. The causes vary from region to region, but the most important causes are plants that produce pollen and molds. Thus, you can simply establish the causes of your allergy by analyzing the environment surrounding you. According to science, you can predict how bad an allergy season will be. As it was described before, pollen is a major allergy trigger. Pollen and mold can increase with moisture. Thus, if there is more rain, then you should expect a worse-than-usual allergy season.

Attempt Self-Hypnosis

Even though many people are skeptical when they hear about this method, it has been proven effective. According to scientists, hypnosis may help relieve the symptoms of allergies, as long as they are combined with other allergy treatments as well. Allergy sufferers need to imagine that they are in a safe place, with no allergens around. They could do that by imagining that they are either on a snowy mountain or at the beach. According to the same research, it has been reported that those who understand hypnosis are able to reduce about a third of their congestion.

Herbs and Supplements

The multitude of amazing herbs that are found in nature can block histamine’s effect before they even have time to progress. People who are prone to allergies are advised to consume tea, onions, pineapple, kiwi, and tuna. However, they should steer clear of alcohol, caffeine, chocolate, artificial sweeteners, sunflower seeds and wheat. Furthermore, they can also take a 500 mg supplement of quercetin up to two twice a day, before the allergy season starts. Doctors advise patients to take it with vitamin C because it works best in this case. Butterbur is just as effective, and it can block the production of leukotrienes (a family of inflammatory mediators).

Modify the Indoor Environment

Once you know exactly what you are allergic to, you can take better care are minimize your triggers. A good way of reducing the negative symptoms of allergies would be by making changes in your living space. If you are allergic to pollens, you need to replace air filters. This helps trap out pollen, and it gives you the chance of breathing fresh air. If you are allergic to mildew, then you need to renovate your home as often as possible. By painting the walls once a year you can reduce considerably your seasonal struggle. However, when it comes to allergies, it is important to remember that pests and insects that enter people’s homes spread all kinds of bad illnesses and allergies around. Protect both you and your kids by getting in touch with a pest control team.

Nasal Saline Flushing

Although this is a commonsense solution, it is worth sharing. There are many allergens in your nasal passages that make you feel ill. By eliminating them, you can solve the problem, or at least attempt to ease the symptoms. To flush your nose, you just need to make a saline solution. Purchasing a nasal saline rinse from the shop is just as good.

At the same time, it would be a good idea to wash your hair at the end of the day so that you can eliminate pollens that are trapped in there.

Essential Oils

Allergy sufferers know what it feels like walking around in a fog. If you are looking for fast and natural relief, then essential oils are the solution for you. They are incredibly effective at reducing these horrid symptoms. Essential oils can reduce pain, inflammation and boost your immune system, making your body a lot stronger when dealing with allergen triggers. The most common types of essential oils recommended are menthol, eucalyptus or lavender. A homemade vapor rub is excellent to eliminate excess congestion and mucus. You can find aromatherapy diffusers kits in stores or make them at home.

Acupuncture

This practice that is popular in the Chinese Medicine has become a lot more popular over the years. It has incredible results for different problems. It seems that acupuncture has the power of reducing the symptoms associated with allergies with no side effects. Treating seasonal allergies with acupuncture offers a quick response even during the first medical visit. Patients are able to determine whether this practice is working for them or not by counting the number of sneezes per day. Every patient reacts in a different way to allergies. That’s why some need to come back for a booster more often than others. Thanks to the Traditional Chinese Medicine patients are able to eliminate their dependency on allergy medication.

No matter what kind of allergies you are dealing with, you need to keep in mind that there are natural healing methods besides traditional medicine. It is worth trying it because it is accessible and brings incredible results.

3 Signs of the Flu and What to do About it

So you woke up this morning and something in you just did not feel right. It can be frustrating to have a nice long streak of good health and then wake up one day not feeling so well. In fact, the healthiest of us can even get sick even when we choose the right habits.

We choose to eat right, to sleep right, the exercise properly, and to stay away from germs and always wash our hands. Even with those principles in place, it can still be possible to catch a case of the flu. If you are coming down with some symptoms and do not know what to do about it, here are a few signs that you have the flu and here is what to do about it.

1. You have the chills and feel very cold

This can be a great indicator of coming down with a flu. In fact, sometimes getting the chills can be very uncomfortable and make us want to curl up in a ball of six or seven of our heaviest down comforters. When you have the chills, the first inclination may be to bundle up as much as possible. While this may feel the best, it is not always the best to break the fever. Do not bundle up too much as your temperature may rise. Instead, stay cooler with less articles of clothing to try to get the temperature to stay at an even pace. Also, keep track of your temperature with a nice thermometer. Dual-mode thermometers are perfect for a household of varying ages and can keep you on the right pace to break the fever.

2. You have an achy body

When the flu is present, along with the chills, the aches and pain can be prevalent in the body as well. In fact, the aches from the flu may make you want to just lie down and wait for them to pass. While it is inevitable that sleeping more will help the symptoms to pass, you will also want to get a bit of moderate to light exercise. A nice short and brisk walk will help the body to circulate nutrients and may promote healing. Just be careful not to overdo it with exercise as too much of a good thing may lead to a longer time in bed with even worse aches and pains.

3. You have a sore throat

If your throat is sore and you are coughing non-step, you may have the signs of a fever coming up. It may be tempting to live off of cough drops and just stay in bed. But the reality is that many cough drops contain added sugars: and added sugars are NOT going to help your immune system get through this time. Instead, drink lots and lots of water. Do not drink sodas as they also contain sugar; but drink plenty of water to make sure your body gets the fluids to both stave off dehydration (can be worse from diarrhea) and also help your throat clear up over time to make it less sore and make the coughs go away.

Conclusion

Hopefully this article can show you some signs that you may be coming down with the flu. Even better, hopefully it can help you out when you don’t know what to do about making it go away. Unfortunately, nothing will strictly cure the flu; however, you can help to heal it by practicing the above smart techniques to make it go away quicker.

If you have some additional tips to make the flu go away as well as symptoms to add and advice to give, leave your comments below and the conversation will begin.

How To Stay Healthy All Year Round

Creating a perfect balance between the mind and the body is a key element that allows people to live a healthy life. To live a healthy life, people need to become aware of the fact that even small factors can take a toll on their overall health. One of the most dangerous factors that cause people to suffer from different illnesses these days is stress. Often people don’t even realize how big of an impact can stress have on their bodies. Once you analyze your life and come to the conclusion that you spend a big part of it under stress, you need to start making changes.

Your diet can also affect the way your body feels. Although this is quite a logical aspect, a lot more people need to realize that in order to consolidate their immune system they need to have a decent intake of vitamins and minerals. Last but not least, drinking enough water is a major key element for a healthy, balanced life.

Get Proper Rest

It is getting much harder to stay feeling good and healthy these days, considering the big amount of stress and pollution people need to face each day. However, there are a few simple things that everyone can do to get their life back on track. For example: getting proper rest each night. Good sleep is an essential for a balanced mind and body. Sleep helps your body to recharge itself and consolidate your immune system. Furthermore, sleep helps you fight anxiety and depression. Everyone should aim to sleep around 7-8 hours a day. When you get enough sleep, you look better, and you feel even better.

Lack of sleep can take a serious toll on people’s daytime energy, productivity, and even weight. Making simple changes to your life can have a great impact on the quality of your sleep. Create a sleeping pattern, stay away from bright screens an hour or two before you sleep, exercise regularly and clear your head.

Eat Nutritious and Healthy Food

Even though this is common sense, it is important to emphasize the fact that a healthy body needs proper nutrition. Eating healthily is another major part that ensures a perfect harmony and balance. Not eating enough of the right food could lead to certain diseases, weight problems, emotional problems and even sleep problems. Everyone knows the saying: “you are what you eat”. People who want to feel good in their body, look better and have a natural glow should aim to eat proper food. Your skin will start looking fresher, and you’ll get a natural glow to your body. Eating healthy requires a bit of effort, but it’s not impossible.

Willing to make a change related to the food you eat will be beneficial for you in the long term. There are a few simple tips that everyone can incorporate into their life. You could start by reading labels before you buy certain products, eating foods that you can grow and are not processed, drinking more water and keeping healthy snacks handy.

Make Changes in Your Life

When it comes to a healthy body, you have to make important changes and stick to them for the rest of your life. As already mentioned before, changing your diet might take some time to get used to, but once you do it, you’ll be able to enjoy the results in no time. Some other equally important changes that people can make so that they can feel better include being more active, giving up certain addictions and staying away from stress and negative people.

There are so many ways of keeping active. If you’re not into going to the gym each day, then you could consider walking. Walking each day allows you to stay young and healthy. However, quitting dangerous and damaging habits can take time. The variety of treatment centers in Washington can help you out. They provide different treatment programs and individualized recovery options no matter the type of substance use. People who wish to quit their addictions once and for all are advised to seek professional help.

Drink Plenty of Water

Staying hydrated regardless of the season is an essential aspect of a healthy mind and body. If you wish to keep colds and illnesses away from you, it is good to remember to drink fluids each day. Many people consider that they don’t have to drink a lot of water if they eat plenty of fruit and drink teas. Even though it is possible to stay hydrated with the help of beverages people drink in a day, it has been proven that water is the most effective in this case. Drinking water helps your brain to function properly. Studies show that even mild dehydration can have an impact on your brain.

Water is a primordial substance that improves mood and concentration and helps reduce the frequency of headaches. Some specialists advise people to drink water half an hour before each meal. Besides that, water can help people lose weight and even eliminate kidney stones.

Smile Each Day

Surrounding yourself with positive people can have a great impact on your overall mind and even health. Everyone knows that it is good to live a happy and positive life, but not many people are trying enough to make it happen. One of the best ways of recovering from a bad day is laughter. Of course, taking the time to meditate and think about certain aspects has its role, but laughter can instantly lift the spirits and change a person’s mood and perspective on life.

Laughter can improve your health, strengthen your immune system, diminish pain and reduce the damaging effects of stress. By seeking out different ways of living a happy life, people can improve their emotional health, strengthen their relationships and even add a few years to their life. Nothing works more effectively to bring balance to your emotional life than a good laugh. Humor connects people and keeps them focused and alert. It also allows them to be more forgiving and release anger.

Hepatitis C: An infectious liver disease that you should be aware of

Hepatitis C, a liver disease caused by a virus, is one of the most common and deadly infectious diseases worldwide. The World Health Organization (WHO) says that there are 71 million people suffering from chronic hepatitis C infection in the world and 399,000 of them die from the disease and its complications annually. Unfortunately, there is no vaccine to protect people from the disease at present. Understanding how the disease spreads and how to prevent yourself from getting infected is important.

Transmission

The pathogen that triggers hepatitis C is the hepatitis C virus (HCV). The genome of HCV is a single-stranded RNA. Like other RNA viruses, HCV mutates rapidly and there are many different strains circulating in the world. This increases the difficulty of the detection, treatment, and prevention of HCV infection. HCV is a blood-borne virus, meaning that it can be spread through contamination by blood and other body fluids. The exposures associated with transmission of HCV include:

  1. The use of injectable drugs like heroin
  2. Blood transfusion or receipt of blood products
  3. Organ transplantation
  4. Injuries by medical equipment that has not been fully sterilized, such as needles
  5. Birth to an infected mother
  6. Having unsafe sex with an infected person
  7. Sharing personal items like razor

Of these, the use of injectable drugs may be the primary mode of transmission of HCV. In some regions, more than 80% of HCV-infected people get the infection through unsafe injecting drug use. The reason is that many intravenous drug users share needles. In the past, HCV infection was strongly associated with blood transfusion. Now, thanks to blood donor screening, HCV is rarely transmitted by blood transfusion or organ transplantation.

Symptom

Many people with HCV infection do not know that they are infected because they do not experience any symptoms after exposure to the virus. Only 15% of HV-infected people exhibit acute symptoms. When symptoms occur, they may include loss of appetite, fever, tiredness, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, muscle pain, joint pain, and jaundice. The severity of these symptoms is usually mild but can be severe in some cases. Many of the initial symptoms of HCV infection are also seen in other diseases. For instance, jaundice, a condition characterized by the yellowing of the skin and the whites of the eyes, can also be triggered by tumors, narrowing of a bile duct, malaria, and other diseases. For these reasons, many people with HCV infection go undiagnosed.

HCV infection may remain ‘silent’ for as many as 20-30 years. These infected people do not exhibit obvious symptoms but the virus is actually causing damage to their livers and other organs. Left untreated, HCV infection may progress to more severe medical conditions, such as cirrhosis, liver cancer, and liver failure. At that time, treatment will be much more difficult. Every year, nearly 399,000 die of hepatitis C, mainly as a result of cirrhosis and liver cancer.

Diagnosis

  1. HCV antibody test

When the body is infected with HCV, the body’s immune system produces antibodies to fight the virus. Detecting the presence of these antibodies helps determine whether a person is infected with HCV or not. The HCV antibody test is a simple blood test and is usually the first test done when a doctor suspects a patient has hepatitis C. A positive result means that the person has had an HCV infection at some time.

  1. HCV RNA test

The HCV RNA test uses PCR to detect HCV RNA in blood samples. This method can be used to measure the number of HCV in the blood and monitor patients’ response to anti-viral therapies. But false-positive and false-negative results are possible.

  1. Liver function test

HCV mainly affects the liver. There are some useful biomarkers of liver damage, such as ALT, AST, ALP, and GGT. The liver function test is a blood test that measures the levels of these biomarkers in the blood. It helps doctors evaluate the state of a patient’s liver. If an individual has abnormal levels of these biomarkers and also has HCV antibodies, there is a great chance that he or she has HCV infection.

Treatment

Not all people exposed to HCV develop hepatitis C. According to estimates, 15-25% of HCV-infected people clear the virus from their bodies in the absence of treatment. However, the majority of people exposed to the virus develop a chronic infection, which may cause liver scarring and other severe complications. Immediate and appropriate treatment is very important.

The treatment of HCV infection depends on liver’s state, HCV strains, and other factors. At present, antiviral medications are the most common treatment for people infected with HCV. These antiviral medications are good at ridding the body of the virus and they have mild or no side effects. Here are some examples of these antiviral medications: daclatasvir, elbasvir/grazoprevir, and ledipasvir. Treatment with these antiviral medications can cure up to 95% of chronic HCV infection.

The problem is that many people don’t know they are infected or don’t have warning symptoms. These people don’t seek medical cure until the disease is advanced. If the liver damage is very serious, a liver transplant may be required.

Prevention

In many countries, children are recommended to get vaccines for hepatitis A and B. Unfortunately, there is no vaccine for hepatitis C. It has been about three decades since HCV was first identified. Scientists have made a lot of efforts to understand the biology of HCV infection. Treatment of hepatitis C has vastly improved over the years. But the development of HCV vaccines is hindered by a lack of appropriate animal models and the high mutation rates of HCV.

There are some tips to help you reduce the risk of getting HCV infection:

  1. Stay away from drugs
  2. Use a condom when having sex
  3. Wear gloves when touching other people’s blood
  4. Don’t share personal items like toothbrush, razor, or nail clipper
  5. Don’t share tattoo needles

Author Bio

Caroline Liu is an author, focused on topics like infectious diseases and life sciences, and works at Cusabio, a biotech company that offers proteins, antibodies, and ELISA kits as well as protein expression services.

Tips to Stay Healthy During Flu Season

It is a relatively dreaded occurrence during certain times of the year; it is inevitable that at certain times, you will be exposed to the cold and the flu. Whether it be coworkers or your kids classmates, or simply the general public: you will run into sick people this year.

Although you cannot totally prevent yourself from being exposed the flu, can do certain things to not only prevent it, but also to increase your probability of staying healthy during the worst of strains.

Take these tips to heart during flu season for your best chances at staying healthy this year:

1. Wash your hands all of the time

Note a fan of washing your hands or staying clean in general? Well then, change your habits, because germs are spread like wildfire through various surfaces, food, and through hand to hand contact extremely frequently. Any time you have come in contact with a public place, touched an item in a public area (including handling money), or shaken someone’s hand, it is imperative that you wash your hands to minimize exposure to the flu germs.

2. Get your sleep each and every night

It is seriously important that you hit the snooze more and more each night: your body needs time to repair from mental and physical exhaustion and also to prepare itself for defending against the flu. The longer you sleep, the more your body has time to build up the antibodies and white blood cell counts required to fight the flu and keep you healthy all year this year. Snooze on!

3. Keep track of how you feel

It is extremely important and often overlooked to listen to your body and let it tell you what to do based on how it feels. You should take care to monitor fever related to serious conditions as well as signs of the flu so that you can rest at the onset of any incoming negative feelings. Feeling burned out and susceptible to illness? Get more sleep and rest tonight to make sure your body can fight the flu and carry on with every day life tomorrow morning!

4. Exercise at a regular interval

If you are already a health and fitness nut, you may already be aware of the importance of exercising at a regular interval or frequency. Exercising gets the blood flowing and allows the body to use circulation to deliver nutrients in the bloodstream. Nutrient delivery allows for quicker access for antibodies to tissues and also allows the nutrients you put into your body diet to get everywhere they need to go to keep you healthy and flu-free for the season.

Summary

I hope these tips have helped you out in regard to staying healthy and away from the flu this season. If you are in public places like work, school, or airports this year, you will have to take extra care to avoid any germs related to the flu.

Protect yourself and protect your family (by not bringing illness home) by washing your hands, getting the right amount of sleep, tracking how you feel, and by exercising regularly to keep the flu at bay and at the doorstep: your body and your family will thank you for it!

Agree or disagree with some of my tips for avoiding the flu? Comment below and we can discuss right away what the best practices are for keeping you flu-free this year! 🙂