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Hep C and DLBCL

Anonymous user (not verified)

Anyone out there have any personal history of Hep C, now fighting DLBCL?  Just curious if there are many out there who were treated for Hep C, had it "cured" and then contracted DLBCL.  Terry was treated for his Hep C in 2009/2010 for six months and his PCR tests ever since have all come back negative.  He has it checked yearly and again before he started chemo.  BOTH Hep B and C were negative; but, since his liver tests are creeping back up . . . after two rounds of chemo and all those antibiotics he was one with the infection he had after his surgery in April . . . I'm just wondering if there is anyone out there who may have had or who may be seeing the same enzyme elevations.  His bilirubin is low . . . so, I take some comfort in that much.  Just hoping to find some reassurance that this toxic junk isn't going to cause the Hep C to come back or cause permanent liver damage.

You know me . . . the worry wart queen.  Today, that is what I'm most worried about.  Tomorrow, I'm sure, it will be one of the plethora of other things there are to be scared about.

God, I'll be so glad to have our lives back and live from scan to scan.  That, too, will be nerveracking . . . but, at least I won't have to watch my love be poked and prodded every three weeks.

Thanks for any reassurance/experience any of you may have with regard to this, today, my biggest worry.


Posts: 328
Joined: Jul 2016

I believe you have asked about this before - maybe even in the first thread you started on this forum.

Chemotherapy means hard work for the liver, metabolizing all those "poisons" necessary to kill the cancer cells. Liver enzymes, therefore, are likely to become elevated during treatment.

Hepatitis C is caused by a virus. If Terry has tested negative for this infection, how could his treatment reactivate a virus that is no longer there?

I never had any form of hepatitis, and tested negative for those prior to my first R-CHOP. Nevertheless, my liver enzymes, like Terry's, crept up steadily during treatment. As a matter of fact, they shot up to FIVE TIMES the upper limit of "normal" a couple of months after chemo was over. The hematologist did raise an eyebrow then, and ordered a sonogram, which was perfectly normal, and weekly blood tests, which showed those worrisome values subsiding after two or three weeks. That episode was very likely due to a ten-day round of anti inflammatory prescribed by my PCP for acute back pain. My liver enzymes have since returned almost exactly to their pre-chemo levels - well within normal.

Terry's doctors are certainly well aware of his past history of Hepatitis C and keeping an eye on his blood test results. It cannot hurt to make sure they see anything that is not looking normal, of course. It might also serve the purpose of reassuring you if you ask them what they think of those values in Terry's particular case.


Max Former Hodg...
Posts: 3690
Joined: May 2012

As I was reading your liver enzyme post, Afraid, I had the EXACT same thought as PBL posted. 

Hep C is a virus. Someone cured of that virus  (or any virus) cannot have the virus ressurected by chemo.  Chemo will cause elevated enzymes; I know I wrote to you early-on regarding this at some length.  But it cannot bring a substance (like a virus) into existence ex nihilo -- "from nothing."

In overwhelming liklihood, his higher enzymes are from irritation caused by the chemo.  But the only way he today could have Hep C would be if he never actually got rid of it, or became infected a second time via unknown route.  But not by chemo.

"Dead is dead," same for viruses as for anything else.  Similiar to Wendy's, ca 1980: "Parts is parts."

(If you highlight the link, and then right-click, it will show a "Go To" function, which allows playing the video)




Evarista's picture
Posts: 318
Joined: May 2017

I, too, had normal bilirubin and elevated LFT's throughout my chemo.  All back to normal now, so don't take these results as an indication of anything more than what PBL and Max have said.  As long has his viral burden by PCR stays at zero, it's at zero. No reason to expect re-emergence of this particular virus/disease.  

Anonymous user (not verified)

Thanks, everybody.  Sorry if I repeated myself . . . not unusual for me these days.  I mentioned it again only because we were told that there is one of the RCHOP drugs that can reactivate viruses.  I think it's the Vincristine.  We were also told that the screening test for Hep C will always show Hep C antibodies; but that when the PCR test comes back negative for viral load, we can assume the Hep C has been "cured".  With the liver enzyme tests rising, and that dang Vincristine stirring things up, as we were told, I felt it deserved another "ask".  The PA for our oncologist, back before we started chemo . . . asked Terry if he had ever had chickep pox . . . as THAT virus/antibody history could trigger shingles.  I know I'm probably worried for nothing . . . yet, to see those liver tests rise again with him . . . just triggers the obvious concerns that, yes, all this stuff (I realize) can cause permanent liver damage.  I wouldn't necessarily worry as much as I do about that if he hadn't had the Hep C, but given his history I would think it only increases his chances with that.  I know.  I know.  One worry at a time with all this.  But with each day . . . and each abnormal anything . . . it's a different worry/concern with any of these abnormal results.  We're hoping and feel confident that he will make a full recovery; but, I'm sure you can understand and wonder, Is the cure worse than the disease?  Obviously, we're confident we made the right choice in going this route to try and nip this all in the bud; yet, with that choice, obviously, comes added concern for what it can do to a person, long-term.  Trying to focus on the remission we hope is ours; but that doesn't stop all the concerns we each have, right?

Thanks for listenig and for the reminders that this junk plays with every system in a person's body and that what we're seeing is "normal" "abnormal.  It helps.

On the port issue . . . things seem to be much improved; so, I think we're on schedule for Hit #3 this Thursday.  

Take care all . . . 

Til nex time . . . 

Over and out.

Evarista's picture
Posts: 318
Joined: May 2017

Some viruses integrate into our DNA and remain there, essentially becoming "part of us" for life.  The one we are all most familiar with is Varicella zoster, which causes chickenpox. If reactivated later in life due to immunosuppression, etc., it manifests as shingles.  HCV is not known for doing this; it is a different kind of virus.  Can a person have undectable levels of virus still infecting them?  Of course that is possible.  But generally speaking, no virus = no virus.

Anonymous user (not verified)

Thanks, Evarista!  I find a higher level of relief in your explanation.  It helps ease the worry.  


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