If you're involved with Social Security disability claims you know that hepatitis C causes much misery, disability and death. There are almost four million people in the United States infected with hepatitis C. It's an epidemic that receives far too little coverage in the media. The treatment available has been horribly inadequate. It's expensive. A high percentage of people who attempt the treatments cannot tolerate the horrible side effects. Even if the patient can afford treatment and can tolerate the side effects, about half the time it doesn't work. Without effective treatment, a person infected with hepatitis C slowly becomes weaker and eventually succumbs to liver failure or liver cancer. It may take ten, twenty, thirty years or more but it's inexorable.
Finally, finally, there's good news on hepatitis C. Researchers at the University of Texas have come up with a drug that appears to cure, that's right, cure, hepatitis C in a few weeks for those with genotype 1 infections, which account for about 45% of hepatitis C cases. The medicine is expensive but hepatitis C inexorable progressing to liver cancer or liver failure is even more expensive. This is a big deal.