Duke hepatologists are liver experts who are internationally renowned for their hepatitis research and expertise. We have been involved in the development of nearly every major new hepatitis drug and diagnostic technology in the past decade. If you are eligible, we can offer you the latest therapies through our clinical trials. We work closely with you to ensure you receive the most effective treatment for your hepatitis.
Expert Hepatitis Care
If you have been diagnosed with hepatitis, our expert liver specialists can help you manage your disease. Hepatitis infection often goes undetected until liver damage is present. We work with you to reduce your risk for serious liver damage, including cirrhosis (liver scarring), liver cancer and liver failure. If you are experiencing end-stage liver disease as a result of hepatitis, our liver cancer and liver transplant experts assess your condition and recommend the right course of action.
We work closely with you to identify the type of hepatitis you have - whether it is hepatitis A, B, C, D or E. We also perform advanced testing to pinpoint the genotype - meaning the particular strain of virus. This is important to ensure you receive the most effective treatment. A treatment plan is developed based on your individual condition and symptoms. We have the expertise and understanding to know if a therapy in clinical trial may be the best option for you. Our goal is to help you treat your disease, and manage your life with hepatitis.
Choose Duke for your hepatitis treatment because we offer:
- Hepatitis specialists. Our hepatologists are gastroenterologists whose advanced training allows them to specialize in liver diseases.
- Recognized leaders. As recognized leaders in hepatitis research and treatment, we work with all of the latest hepatitis diagnostic tools and treatments, including the latest direct acting antivirals. We educate physicians around the country to use these developments effectively.
- Access to clinical trials. A variety of new therapies, and therapy combinations are available through our clinical trials. We work closely with you to determine which treatment will provide the most benefit to you. As part of the Hepatitis B Research Network, we offer you the opportunity to participate in treatment studies that may test new therapies, and help us better understand the disease. We also participate in most of the major hepatitis C research studies, and offer these opportunities to you when appropriate.
- Expertise in the latest diagnostic tool. We were involved in the research and development of FibroScan, and were one of the first medical centers to offer the noninvasive alternative to liver biopsy. It uses ultrasound to evaluate scarring within the liver, also known as liver fibrosis, which contributes to cirrhosis.
- Liver cancer experts. Because advanced hepatitis can progress to liver cancer, we work closely with cancer specialists to coordinate regular liver cancer screenings. If found, our experts will treat liver cancer at the earliest possible stage.
- Expert liver transplant program. If your hepatitis progresses to the point where a liver transplant becomes necessary, our team of hepatologists and transplant surgeons have some of the best liver transplant outcomes in the United States.
Your treatment will be based on the type of hepatitis you have, whether it is acute or chronic, and its genotype, meaning which strain of the virus has been identified. These therapies are available to treat hepatitis, however, additional therapies and combinations may be available through our clinical trials.
Olysio (simeprevir) and Solvadi (sofosbuvir) are a new class of antivirals which prevent the hepatitis C virus from replicating itself. Studies show they may be more effective at treating hepatitis than older antivirals, which include peginterferon and ribavarin. Clinical trials are underway to test new therapy combinations that include these newer medications without interferon.
If your liver has been severely damaged, you may be considered for a liver transplant. The transplant surgeon removes your damaged liver and replaces it with a healthy liver.
Ultrasound images assess stiffness in your liver which corresponds to liver scarring.
A sample of liver tissue is taken to confirm a liver diagnosis, and may be used to determine if you carry a gene that increases your risk for liver scarring. These results help us develop proactive treatments for several liver diseases.
Identify hepatitis antibodies in your blood. The results help determine if you have, or have had hepatitis. Tests can also determine if you can pass hepatitis on to others, and if you are immune to the infection.
Measure your liver’s ability to produce protein and eliminate bilirubin, a blood waste product. Liver function tests also measure enzymes released by liver cells that are released as a result of liver damage or disease.