Physician Focus for November: Hepatitis

The November episode of Physician Focus provides an introduction to hepatitis, a condition perhaps most well known to patients as a viral infection, but one with multiple causes, several variations, and potentially serious consequences.

This disease of the liver affects a total of more than four million Americans – many of whom are unaware they have the condition – and is a major cause of cirrhosis and liver cancer and death by infection, claiming some 15,000 lives every year.

Guests for the program are two gastroenterologists from Milford Regional Medical Center in Milford, Massachusetts, Albert Crimaldi, M.D., Ph.D. (right, photo) and Maggie Ham, M.D., (center). They join host and primary care physician Bruce Karlin, M.D. (left) to discuss the causes, types, prevention, and treatments of the condition.

The conversation includes a focus on two of the more prevalent forms of the disease: hepatitis C, a viral infection that reaches more than three million people and one that has been targeted by public health officials, and NASH, nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, or fatty liver disease, a condition becoming more prevalent as obesity rates remain high.

Physician Focus is available for viewing on public access television stations throughout Massachusetts and also available online at www.massmed.org/physicianfocus and www.physicianfocus.org.

  1. Hepatitis now is having the most impact on public health, many people who have it don’t know they have it. Understanding the multiple causes and how it is treated is important for this disease to stop spreading and also to gain a better perceptive of the widespread and growing condition. Positive hepatitis C diagnosis is certainly a serious matter, but patients can still do something to avoid damaging effects , making other lifestyle changes like eating a healthy diet, getting regular exercise as well as a withdrawing from drinking alcohol maybe a positive way to fight this crippling disease.

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