I'm a Vietnam Vet, 1967 - 1970 era, who served in the
field, not in the rear. Cu Chi was our base camp. CUT at the
Phila. VA Hospital, during a C&P blood test, apparently
they found me positive for HEPC/HCV, wrote it up, put it in a
folder, and never told ME!!
This was Jan.1994. In 1999,during a gall bladder removal,
the civilian hospital DR. saw my liver, performed a biopsy,
and pronounced it fibrous, chronic. Count was high: 873,000.
I went on Interfuron and Ribavarin/Rebetron for (1) full
year to the date. I never varied, never missed. I drank
nothing but water (I don't smoke, nor drink alcohol) and used
milk thistle 2xp/day. My count went down to 86,000 in 3
months=quick responder. Then it went to 393,000, 670,000, and
at 7 months was back up to 900,000+.
They kept me on the meds. The meds caused 2 different types
of arthritis and caused my immune system to start attacking
itself, which left me worse off than before.
I have been recuperating for 2 years now. I am no longer
considered a viable Interferon candidate. Univ. of Penn's
Gillian Zeldin is now my doctor. Now I also have thyroid
problems, nodes and nodules and Univ. of Penn's Susan Mandell
is that doctor.
I had rotator cuff surgery because of lumps in muscles and
tendons, which prevented re-traction. They cut 2 biceps
tendons, 1 scapular tendon, and 1 pectoral tendon, which had
to be fixed.
I also have male sexual problems (hardening of vessels in
penis) and went from size 101/2" shoe to 13 EEE. I have
lumps in neck and head, and ALL my lymph glands are hard as
rocks. During my last ultrasound the doctor discovered that
all had lima bean sized dark shadows in them. The doctors
don't say much. They just scratch their heads.
I have pain and fatigue, and am going after the VA over
this. Vietnam blood exposure and/or inoculations with an item
called Gameglobulin in 1968,while at Special Forces Training
Group, Ft.Bragg, NC. It was/is a whole blood product. It was
never checked for HepC/HCV, since they didn't know about it
then. It was supposed to be refrigerated but we used it warm.
The box came with 2 needles, and 12 bottles, which we had to
keep and use for 1 full year.
The army claimed it was an automatic blood thinner that
would kick in when the weather was hot, allowing us to perform
despite the heat? Now what?
Any ideas, comments, suggestions? I sure could use some
comforting advice or at least some informative advice. I still
can't believe the VA cost me 5 more years with their
ignorance, but I have the records and in black and white which
say I was HCV positive, Jan.1994.
Ethically, don't they have to tell me? Morally? Legally?
Daniel G. N. Sr.