Hepatitis C Increase Accompanies Epidemic of Injection Drug Use

There's been a big increase in hepatitis C across central Appalachia, especially rural parts of the region, the CDC reported Thursday. That only stands to reason, because young people in that part of the country are injecting heroin and other opioids at epidemic rates.

There's been a big increase in hepatitis C across central Appalachia, especially rural parts of the region, the CDC reported Thursday. That only stands to reason, because young people in that part of the country are injecting heroin and other opioids at epidemic rates.

Hepatitis C infection is serious, often chronic and sometimes fatal. It leads to cirrhosis of the liver and liver cancer, and by far the most common way of acquiring it is by sharing a drug needle, which exposes users to the virus in someone else's blood. There's a great new drug for it, Sovaldi, but it costs $84,000 for a 12-week course. An estimated 3.2 million people in the United States live with hepatitis C.

Read more at The Washington Post: http://wapo.st/1IXi1WH