I had hepatitis C for 25 years. After I was cured, someone asked me if I noticed anything different. I thought about this for a moment. Yes, I did notice some differences, but the greatest of these was the freedom I felt.

Living with a potentially infectious virus is like living with a time bomb; not only could it hurt me, it could hurt others. Being cured is freedom from hepatitis C.

Occasionally I hear people voice their concerns about taking direct-acting antivirals (DAAs) to treat hepatitis C. I understand these concerns. A child of the 60’s, an early adopter of “natural medicine,” and reluctant medication-taker, I don’t take medicine often. However, I know all too well what hepatitis C can do. It may be silent, but not forever. As long as hep C was on board, I was at increased risk for all types of cancers, stroke, heart disease, Parkinson’s, and early death from all causes of mortality, especially liver disease.

Alright you say, but are DAAs safe? Rigorous scientific research says yes. A recently published article backs this up: “Assessing the Safety of Direct-Acting Antiviral Agents for Hepatitis C” by Elizabeth A. McGlynn, PhD, et al. (JAMA Network June 7, 2019) This large study of 33,808 patients, reported that treatment using direct-acting antivirals was associated with lower odds of experiencing the following adverse events: death, multiple organ failure, hepatic decompensation, acute-or-chronic liver events, and arrhythmia.

Still skeptical? Don’t trust the Food and Drug Administration or mainstream physicians? James Freeman, the maverick doctor in Australia who treated thousands of people with generics and non-generics has combed his data and found similar results.

So if you are still living with hepatitis C and afraid to try the treatment, perhaps it is time to put aside your fears and start walking towards freedom.