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Hepatitis Day of Reckoning for a Happening Virus

part of the disease is its 'silence'. Many people are carriers of the virus and don't know about it. This is one of the biggest challenges in containing the spread of the disease. Most often, patients seek medical help when it is already too late. The silent killer, as it is called simply eats up the liver, causing cirrhosis, liver cancer and death. Nearly 80% of liver cirrhosis cases are attributed to HBV.

One of the key challenges to combating the spread of the disease is the possibility of co-infection a person already infected with one type of hepatitis could be vulnerable to the attack of another type of Hepatitis. Therefore, it is imperative that patients in the throes of chronic liver disease should avail vaccination for Hepatitis A. On the same lines, sufferers of Hepatitis C, vulnerable to Hepatitis B, should protect themselves with the Hepatitis B vaccine.

This disease also spells double trouble. HIV, which has similar transmission modes, makes many HIV victims prone to Hepatitis B or Hepatitis C infection. There are currently millions of people worldwide who are infected with both HIV and Hepatitis. HIV simply fuels liver damage and is death sentence for those who are attacked by both the viruses. Many HIV patients ultimately succumb to chronic liver disease.

Key Developments in India
'With the approval and launch of BARACLUDE in India, Bristol-Myers Squibb will now be able to address another area of significant unmet medical need: chronic hepatitis B,' said Mr. Eric Breumier, Managing Director, Bristol-Myers Squibb India while launching a new drug in India, for Hepatitis B.

The Drug Controller General of India has recently given the go-ahead for Baraclude (entecavir) to treat chronic HEPATITIS B. Baraclude is an oral antiviral therapy which will arrest the multiplication of Hepatitis B virus in the liver. This is indeed a positive development for India in the treatment of
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