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CDC Urges Hepatitis C Testing for All Baby Boomers

Cheryl Clark, for HealthLeaders Media, August 17, 2012

While hepatitis C can be transmitted through sexual activity, that mode is very ineffective, says Bryce Smith, Lead Health Scientist for the CDC's Division of Viral Hepatitis who helped write the recommendations.

Whether sexual activity transmits Hepatitis C "could depend on the sexual practice," Smith says. "But sometimes it depends on other things (people) may be sharing around the house. Are they sharing a razor or a toothbrush? If there is an opportunity to share something that contains infected blood, that's a way that someone can become infected."

Prior to tighter infection control guidelines in healthcare settings issued subsequent to the HIV epidemic in the mid 1980s, acute and ambulatory care facilities may have been settings for transmission, for example, a patient who underwent a tonsillectomy decades ago.

That, in part, is why the CDC is issuing this much wider guideline for population testing Smith says.

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2 comments on "CDC Urges Hep C Testing for Boomers"


Linda (8/22/2012 at 2:50 PM)
As I understand it the baby boomer years are 1946-1964. Why are they different here?

Crista (8/20/2012 at 9:34 PM)
Those treatements only work if the patient is willing to follow the entire treatment the way it is supposed to be taken. I've watched a woman go through two of the three treatments she has taken and both times she stopped way too early. The first time, the doctor stopped her with 6 months of treatment left (as soon as it was nondectable) and within 6 months it was back and worse. The second treatment, she stopped it prior to finishing it. I feel bad for her, but she needed to have finished the treatment.