Alan Franciscus In January 2015, I wrote about HCV and Depression. Since that time, I have thought a lot about the link between depression and hepatitis C. There does seem to be a pretty strong link between the two. Add on to that just having a chronic disease, such as hepatitis C, it is not surprising that many people with hepatitis C are depressed.

If you think about it there are many additional issues that increase the level of anxiety and depression that people with hepatitis C are now facing even more than before:

  • Will I be approved for the new medications by my insurance company?
  • Will I be approved for treatment through a patient assistance program?
  • Will I be able to afford the co-pays?
  • Will the treatment work?
  • What if I am not cured?
  • What does my future hold?
  • Will I be able to work?
There are also people,unfortunately, who have just given up and believe they have no choice at all—no insurance, no physician,no future.

The list of uncertainties could go on and on and on.

I’m bringing this up because I just recently ran across an article that startled me because it discussed baby boomers (without HCV) and the increased risk of suicide—baby boomers are at the highest risk for suicide and the risk increases as a baby boomer ages. Additionally,the suicide rates were much higher in men than in women—In 2013, 78% of the 41,149 suicides in the U.S. were among men.

Note: Among baby boomer’s with HCV more than 2/3 are men.

Remember, depression is an illness that is treatable.There are resources at the end of this article and a link to the original article published in January 2015.

I hope that people with HCV and their caregivers will be on the look out for the signs of anxiety,depression and suicidal behavior to offer support.

Be sure to get professional help as needed.

HCV and Depression: HCV Advocate, January 2015
Easy C Guide to Depression*
Coping with Depression and Hepatitis C*
Overview of Depression*
Depression: Self-Help Tips*
HCV and Depression*
HCV and Mental Health Resources*
Managing Depression*
Medical Treatment for Depression*

(*To locate, enter the title into the search field at the HCV Advocate)

: Baby boomers are killing themselves at an alarming rate, raising question: Why?

This first appeared in the August 2015 HCV Advocate, and is reprinted with permission from Alan Franciscus.