Carlos R

Compounding is the pharmaceutical practice of creating personalized medicine.

It can provide solutions to those with allergies to ingredients found in common medications, treatment to those who need a different dose than common shelf medication, or access to those that need a hard to find drug.

Simply put, by creating medicine that’s customized for you, compounding closes the gap between what you need and what big commercial pharmacies can provide.

The Role of Compounding In Hormone Therapy (HT)

Compounding medication is an option for those that are going through hormone therapy (HT). Doctors prescribe bioidentical hormones for this type of treatment to supplement the body when specific hormones are not being produced enough. Bioidentical hormones match the molecular structure of the hormones found in your body. There are several different compounds found in bioidentical hormone creams:

  1. Estradiol
  2. Estriol
  3. Progesterone
  4. Testosterone
  5. Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA)

Compounded Medication Provide These General Benefits and are Important for Women’s Hormonal Health Because…

  • Medications can be made in different strengths. Compounding allows you to find the specific dose that the large chain pharmacies don’t sell. They can customize something that is right for you which is vital for those going through hormone therapy. Each woman is different and deserves to be treated so. Levels of hormones vary from person to person. The most significant benefit of compounding medication for hormonal health is that a dose is made just for you.
  • Medications can be customized. Pharmacists can use ingredients that don’t trigger an allergic response. For those with allergies to certain dyes, flavorings, gluten, or lactose, your medications can be customized to prevent sensitivity to a reaction.
  • Compounding can provide alternative ways of consumption. You won’t have to suffer from the horrible taste of some medications. Your medications can be converted to liquids, pills, topical creams, or injectables. They can even be flavored!
  • Sometimes compounding your medicine can be cheaper than commercial products. Depending on the medication, your pharmacy can combine several medications into one.

Compounded Medications are Used for These Hormone-Related Conditions:

  • Infertility: Many women turn to specialized medicine to induce and maintain pregnancy. Compounded medicine can be used in In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) and other Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) treatments.
  • Menopause: Menopause is clinically diagnosed after a woman has gone 12 months without her period. It is a natural process but can include physical symptoms. Compounded medication may be used to relieve the symptoms if other medications are not adequate.
  • Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS): Factors that play a role in this hormonal condition include an excess of insulin, excess of androgen, low-grade inflammation, and heredity. Women with PCOS experience infrequent or prolonged menstrual periods and develop follicles that prevent eggs from being released. Compounded medicine can restore hormones to a natural level.
  • Primary Ovarian Insufficiency: POI is diagnosed when a woman’s ovaries stop working normally before she is 40 years old. It is not to be confused with premature menopause which is when your period stops before age 40. With POI, you will experience an irregular menstrual period and sometimes can occur as early as a woman’s teen years.

Conclusion

Compounding medication can help women going through hormone therapy or those looking to become pregnant. The largest advantage of compounding is that it can be customized for you. Talk to your endocrinologist and see if compounding medication is right for you.

Are you or someone you know in need of compounded medication? Give SMP Pharmacy a call.

Carlos RWhy Compounding Your Medications is Important for Women’s Hormonal Health?
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Food for fertility
Do’s and Dont’s for fertility foods

Read below for the Do’s and Don’ts of a well-balanced diet that lays the foundation for healthy pregnancy according to “The Fertility Diet” – a Harvard study on fertility food.

Whether you’re taking your first steps to try to conceive or have been trying for years, you may need to re-evaluate your diet in order to ensure that you are taking advantage of every opportunity to increase your chances for fertility. Many people don’t know where to start or have the wrong information about dieting while trying to get pregnant.

Do’s

Drink plenty of water.

Doctors recommend that you drink at least eight – 8 oz. glasses of water a day. That’s half a gallon or approximately two liters.

Increase your intake of vegetables that are rich in iron and protein.

Foods like beans, broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, spinach, asparagus, lima beans, kale, and corn are all excellent sources of iron and protein. “The Fertility Diet” even suggests decreasing the consumption of animal protein – specifically red meat like beef, veal, and pork.

Choose whole grain carbohydrates.

Whole grain carbs like oats, brown rice, barley, corn, rye, and quinoa all increase fiber and slow down the effects on blood sugar and insulin resulting in a low glycemic index. These “slow carbs” allow you to maintain a steady stream of energy and decreases the chances of the diseases that are harmful to pregnancy.

Multivitamins.

Prenatal multivitamins that contain folic acid, vitamin B12, and omega-3 fatty acids have links to positive effects on fertility.

Fish is ok!

While there have been concerns about consuming fish in the past, “the FDA now recommends eating 8 to 12 ounces of fish low in mercury per week.” Cooked fish like salmon, tilapia, cod, and catfish are all low in mercury and provide a good source of protein and omega-3 fatty acids which promote fertility.

Don’ts

Don’t believe the fertility food myths.

Eating pineapples, oysters, ginseng, or other so-called “fertility foods” don’t increase your chances of getting pregnant. The only thing you need to eat is a diet based off proven medical research that provides you with the essential fruits, grains, vegetables, protein, and dairy.

Coffee and Alcohol.

While coffee, tea, and alcohol are okay in moderation, be sure to avoid sugary sodas as they appear to stimulate ovulatory infertility.

Avoid Trans Fats.

The artery-clogging fats found in many commercially prepared products such as fast-foods, frozen meals, cookies, cakes, etc. reduce your chances for pregnancy. Instead, opt for fats found in vegetable oils, salmon, nuts, and seeds.

Don’t smoke.

There is a plethora of research showing that smoking decreases your chance of pregnancy. So, breaking that bad habit is pretty important if you are trying to conceive a child.

Remember

  • Maintain a healthy weight by exercising daily – even if it’s just a quick walk.
  • Get enough rest.
  • Consult your doctor for more information about what is right for you.

What are your favorite meals that follow “The Fertility Diet”? Share your recipes below!

Main Source:

  • “The Fertility Diet: Groundbreaking Research Reveals Natural Ways to Boost Ovulation and Improve Your Chances of Getting Pregnant” by Dr. Jorge E. Chavarro, Dr. Walter C. Willett, and Patrick J. Skerrett
Carlos RFertility Foods: Do’s and Don’ts
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endometriosis
Questions? #AskJenny

Endometriosis is a disorder in which tissue that lines inside of the uterus — the endometrium — grows outside of your womb and on other areas in your body where it doesn’t belong.

Endometriosis is often found in the ovaries, fallopian tubes, and the tissue outside of your uterus. However, sometimes we can also find in the vagina, cervix, vulva, bowel, bladder, or rectum. Rarely, endometriosis appears in other parts of the body, such as the lungs, brain, and skin.

Endometriosis affects more than 11% of American women between 15 and 44. It is especially common among women in their 30s and 40s and may make it harder to get pregnant.

Can endometriosis cause infertility?

Although it is possible for women who have endometriosis to get pregnant, it definitely makes it harder. The American Society for Reproductive Medicine states that this condition: may affect as many as one in every two women with infertility.

For pregnancy to occur, an egg must be released from an ovary, travel through the neighboring fallopian tube, become fertilized by a sperm cell and attach itself to the uterine wall to begin development.

The inflammation and irritation caused by the endometriosis can affect fertility. Inflammation of the fimbria, which picks up the egg and transports it into the fallopian tube, causes swelling and scarring so the egg may not reach its destination. The condition can also damage the sperm or the egg, and may also block the fallopian tubes and keep the egg and sperm from uniting.

However, women with mild to moderate endometriosis can still conceive and carry a pregnancy to term without complications. Doctors advise women experiencing this not to delay having children since the condition tends to worsen over time.

Overcoming infertility due to endometriosis?

While endometriosis can prevent a woman from getting pregnant, by treating the condition itself, patients find that their fertility chances can improve. Although no doctor can guarantee that deep-excision surgery to treat this issue will be a success, pairing it with any of the following assisted reproductive technologies (ART), can give the hope of bearing children:

In Vitro Fertilization (IVF): the most common form of ART, in which a woman’s eggs are collected and fertilized by sperm in a lab, then implanted in her uterus. Learn more about IVF success rates

Intrauterine Insemination (IUI): This method injects a healthy sperm cell directly into the uterus to ensure implantation with proper timing during a woman’s menstrual cycle.

Symptoms of endometriosis

It typically comes with pelvic pain, which is often associated with the menstrual period. Many women experience cramping during their menstrual period. Women with endometriosis usually describe menstrual pain that’s far worse than usual. They also tend to report that the pain increases over time.

Other signs and symptoms of endometriosis can include:

  • Pelvic pain and cramping before your period and several days into your period. Pelvic pain may come along with lower back and abdominal pain.
  • Pain during or after intercourse.
  • Pain with bowel movements or urination.
  • Excessive bleeding during or between periods.
  • Other symptoms may include bloating or nausea, fatigue, constipation, and diarrhea, especially during menstrual periods.

Are you at risk of developing endometriosis?

Several factors might put you at a higher risk of developing endometriosis. Here is a comprehensive list for you to be aware of:

  1. Starting your period at an early age.
  2. Going through menopause at an older age.
  3. Never have given birth.
  4. Short menstrual cycles (less than 27 days).
  5. Having higher levels of estrogen in your body.
  6. Low body mass index (BMI).
  7. Having relatives who have had this condition.
  8. Uterine abnormalities.
  9. Heavy alcohol consumption.

Symptoms end temporarily with pregnancy and end permanently with menopause unless you’re taking estrogen.

When should you see a doctor?

If you have experienced any of the symptoms mentioned above, you should pay a visit to your doctor or see your gynecologist, who specializes in the health of your ovaries, uterus, and other parts of your female reproductive system.

Although there is no cure for this condition, medicine and surgery may be able to help you cope with the symptoms.

Sources

Carlos RWhat is endometriosis and how does it affect fertility and your ability to get pregnant?
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pregnancy-IVF
SMP is your number one source of unbiased infertility information. 

Are you considering In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) for the first time? Given the high cost of IVF,  you’re probably wondering what the chances of having a successful IVF pregnancy are.

Thanks to advances in technology, IVF has become generally successful. If we include women of all ages, the odds of a live birth are between 34 and 42 percent throughout three cycles.

IVF Success Rates

IVF success rates are reported according to a woman’s age since as a woman gets older, the IVF success rates go down if she’s using her own eggs.

  • For women younger than 35, the percentage of live births per egg retrieval* is 54.4 percent.
  • Women ages 35 to 37, the rate of live births per egg retrieval* is 42 percent.
  • For women ages 38 to 40, the rate of live births per egg retrieval* is 26.6 percent.
  • Women ages 41 to 42, the rate of live births per egg retrieval* is 13.3 percent. 
  • Ages 43 and up, the percentage of live births per egg retrieval* is 3.9 percent.

*It’s important to note that these numbers are not per cycle, these are the IVF success rates nationally, when using non-donor eggs, per egg retrieval.

One Cycle vs Multiple Cycles

According to a study, women who conceived with IVF treatment went through an average of 2.7 cycles. Additionally, the odds of success for women all ages after three IVF cycles were between 34 and 42 percent.

Most doctors recommend that you plan on doing multiple cycles since this increases the odds of a successful pregnancy

Wondering what your odds for success with IVF are?

IVF success varies from person to person, and it depends on many different factors. Some factors you can control: maintaining a healthy weight, staying away from cigarettes, whether or not donor eggs (or sperm) will be used, and the competency of the IVF clinic or lab. However, there are others you cannot control, like genetics, your age, prior pregnancies, etc. Read more on the five success factors to consider when going through IVF.

Looking at national averages will give you an idea of the success rate you might want to expect, but it won’t be an accurate predictor of your probabilities.

The good news is that the Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology (SART) has created a patient predictor tool that will give you more personal odds depending on specific factors you need to input like your age, height and weight, how many pregnancies you’ve had, your cause of infertility, and whether you plan on using your own eggs.

The best part of all? The tool is entirely free to use.

Also, you can visit SART’s website to get a more accurate number for the national success rates for IVF or find specific rates for individual clinics.

Having said this, IVF success rates are always unique to the individual and there are some variables that you can manipulate in order to improve your odds.

Carlos RDo you know your chances of IVF pregnancy success?
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IVF-Factors
Factors to Consider for IVF

IVF success factors to consider

IVF can be a complex process, here are some lifestyle factors to consider when deciding to go though in vitro fertilization:

Age

There is an undeniable correlation between age and IVF success rates. According to the CDC statistic center for In Vitro Fertilization, patients age 35 have an embryo live delivery success rate of 27%, needing at least 5 embryos to have an 80% chance of success. Patients age 38 have an embryo live delivery success rate of 23%, needing at least 6 embryos to have an 80% chance of success. Finally patients age 41 have an embryo live delivery success rate of 18%, needing at least 8 embryos to be above 80% chance of success. The number of eggs needed to achieve this amount of healthy embryos varies from 8 to 26 depending on the age.

Fertility issue

Fertility issues most commonly responsive to IVF are:

    • Ovulation issues

 

    • Endometriosis

 

    • Fallopian tube blockages

 

  • Low sperm count

Issues less likely to respond to IVF are:

    • Uterine abnormalities

 

    • Fibroid tumors

 

    • Ovarian dysfunction

 

    • Dual #infertility (both partners struggling with separate infertility issues)

 

  • Long term infertility

Former pregnancy

Previous pregnancies could increase the likelihood of success during your IVF treatment. On the other hand, pregnancies that ended on a #miscarriage might in some cases lower the chances of success. In this case professional help may be necessary to identify the causes behind the miscarriage and whether or not is is likely to affect your current treatment.

Donor eggs and/or sperm

Couples may choose anonymous of known #donors during their IVF process to increase their success rates on specific situations.   

Lifestyle

Smoking is detrimental to fertility in both men and women and should never happen during the IVF process. When a woman is over or under weight, it may also have a significant influence on success from the absorption of fertility medicines to the ability to carry a baby to term. People going through an IVF treatment must consider making some life style changes to improve chances of success.

 

For more information on CDC data on In vitro fertilization success click HERE

 

Jenny SMP fertility pharmacist IVF

Questions? #AskJenny

Carlos R5 success factors to consider when going through IVF
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SMP Makes Inc5000 and Receives 10-Time INC Honoree Distinction 

SMP Pharmacy Solutions is thrilled to announce its recognition as one of the fastest-growing companies in America. This award from Inc. 5000 was received with great excitement from all of the employees who work tirelessly to support our patients with the highest standards of quality service. SMP Fertility, Compounding, Specialty and Retail teams work together to achieve our goal of delivering best-in-class results, not only for our patients, but also for each of the doctors, drug developers and strategic allies who have joined us along our journey. We believe that we need to serve as an example, and this is one step in our commitment to achieving continued growth in each of the areas we service and supporting the communities that we call home.

“If entrepreneurs are the lifeblood of an economy, consider Inc.’s ranking of 5,000 companies America’s circulatory system. Our annual report looks at these fast-growing innovators–and how they made our list. Collectively, the companies on this year’s list amassed $206.2 billion in revenue in 2017, up 158 percent from $79.8 billion in 2014. Hover and click below for more on this year’s Inc. 5000–including the top 10 in greater detail”. -Inc. Media

How the 2018 Inc. 5000 Companies Were Selected

Companies on the 2018 Inc. 5000 are ranked according to percentage revenue growth from 2014 to 2017. To qualify, companies must have been founded and generating revenue by March 31, 2014. They must be U.S.-based, privately held, for-profit, and independent–not subsidiaries or divisions of other companies–as of December 31, 2017. (Since then, some on the list have gone public or been acquired.) The minimum revenue required for 2014 is $100,000; the minimum for 2017 is $2 million. As always, Inc. reserves the right to decline applicants for subjective reasons. Note: Growth rates used to determine company rankings were calculated to two decimal places. In the case of ties, the companies with more revenue were placed higher.

Complete results of the Inc. 5000, including company profiles and an interactive database that can be sorted by industry, region, and other criteria, can be found at www.inc.com/inc5000.

About SMP Pharmacy Solutions
SMP Pharmacy Solutions (SMP) is an award-winning pharmacy that provides Fertility, Specialty, Compounding and Retail services nationwide. Since 2003, management has grown SMP from a local retail pharmacy to a nationwide specialty pharmacy with licenses in 45 states and strategic partnerships with leading manufacturers and MSOs. Acting as a trusted liaison between the patient, doctor’s office, drug manufacturer, and insurance provider, SMP has become one of the top and most trusted independent pharmacies in the country.

About Inc. Media
Founded in 1979 and acquired in 2005 by Mansueto Ventures, Inc. is the only major brand dedicated exclusively to owners and managers of growing private companies, with the aim to deliver real solutions for today’s innovative company builders. Winner of the National Magazine Award for General Excellence in both 2014 and 2012. Total monthly audience reach for the brand has grown significantly from 2,000,000 in 2010 to over 15,000,000 today.  For more information, visit www.inc.com.

For detailed information on our INC5000 ranking and previous years achievements please click here.

 

Carlos RSMP Makes INC 5000 10 Time Honoree Distinction
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Health Insurance Marketplace

health insurance marketplace enrollment 2018

health insurance marketplace enrollment 2018

If you haven’t applied for insurance on HealthCare.gov before, here’s what you need to know about the Health Insurance Marketplace (sometimes known as the health insurance “exchange”).

1. 2019 Open Enrollment runs from November 1 through December 15, 2018

  • Plans sold during Open Enrollment start January 1, 2019.
  • After December 15, you can enroll in 2019 health insurance only if you qualify for a Special Enrollment Period.

2. The Health Insurance Marketplace is for people who don’t have health coverage

If you don’t have health insurance through a job, Medicare, Medicaid, the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), or another source that provides qualifying health coverage, the Marketplace can help you get covered.

  • If you have job-based insurance: You can buy a plan through the Marketplace, but you’ll pay full price unless your employer’s insurance doesn’t meet certain standards. Most job-based plans do meet the standards.
  • If you have Medicare: You can’t switch to Marketplace insurance, supplement your coverage with a Marketplace plan, or buy a Marketplace dental plan. Learn about Medicare and the Marketplace.

3. What you pay for insurance depends on your income

Your savings depend on your expected household income for the year. Over 8 in 10 people who apply are eligible to save.

Get a quick idea if you’ll save. Based on your income estimate, we’ll tell you if you qualify for:

A health insurance plan with savings based on your income

  • You may qualify for a premium tax credit that lowers your monthly insurance bill, and for extra savings on out-of-pocket costs like deductibles and copayments.
  • The plans are offered by private insurance companies with a range of prices and features.

Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP)

Medicaid and CHIP provide free or low-cost coverage to millions of people and families with limited income, disabilities, and some other situations.

4. You can apply for coverage 5 ways

Starting November 1, you can apply any way that works for you:

  • Online
  • By phone
  • With in-person help
  • Through an agent or broker
  • With a paper application

Use this checklist to gather what you’ll need to complete your application (PDF).

Carlos R5 Things You Need to Know About the Health Insurance Marketplace
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Named a leader to watch, CEO Armando Bardisa and SMP Pharmacy Solutions garner awards and join the ranks of influencers nationwide.  
MIAMI, Sept. 27, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Commended for their devotion to personalized service, SMP Pharmacy Solutions announces their most recent notable awards. Ranked as number one in the South Florida Business Journal’s 50 Fastest-Growing Companies, and listed for the ninth time in Inc. 5000 yearly list, the national specialty pharmacy has found its niche. To that end, the pharmacy’s CEO, Armando Bardisa will soon be honored by SFBJ as the 2017 Power Leader in Health Care.

Set to receive his award in October, Bardisa said of the three achievements, “It’s been quite a year for our company and we are honored to accept these accolades. To join the ranks of the powerhouse businesses that SFBJ and Inc. 5000 recognizes is something my team and I can all be very proud of.”

Known as an industry-leading specialty pharmacy with state-of-the-art customer service and knowledgeable staff, integrity is found at the core of the SMP business model. Committed to facilitating improved health for patients, SMP Pharmacy Solutions provides fertility, specialty drugs, compounding and retail services. A trusted resource since 2003; the independently-owned pharmacy is a liaison between the patient, the doctor’s office, the drug manufacturer, and the insurance provider to ensure the patients get their medicine on time every time.

Private companies honored by the South Florida Business Journal are ranked by their percentage of revenue growth over the past two years, SMP Pharmacy Solutions was number one on the list.

The Inc. 5000 list for 2017 ranks the country’s fastest-growing private companies. To qualify for their list companies must rank according to percentage revenue growth over a three-year period. SMP Pharmacy Solutions marks growth at 427.75 percent with a revenue of $118.7 million.

For more information visit www.smppharmacy.com.

Click HERE to read the full press release.

Carlos RSMP Pharmacy Solutions Wins Two Influential Awards While CEO Becomes 2017 Power Leader
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specialty pharmacy

Treatment for Hepatitis CGet all the facts so you can lead a long, healthy life 

What do Evel Knievel, Etta James, and Keith Richards have in common?

Each of these outstanding individuals underwent treatment for Hepatitis C. The lives and successes of such persons stands as a testament to the fact that once diagnosed, Hepatitis C can be lived with. In fact, Richards claims to have cured himself by “just being me.”

Why does this matter?

No matter who you are, adjusting to life with this liver disease is distinctly possible. While cases range in severity and symptoms, ongoing treatments and proper care do directly lessen the impact of the virus with specialty pharmacy.

Today, we’ll talk about how to recognize and react to Hepatitis C, pursue adequate treatments, and thrive despite any diagnoses. As a specialty pharmacy, we are up to date on the latest medical breakthroughs and treatments available.

What is Hepatitis C?

fertility medications Miami, FL

Photo Credit HepititisCentral.com

Hepatitis: inflammation of the liver.

Hepatitis C is a contagious liver disease that’s found worldwide. The severity of the disease ranges between passing illness of a couple weeks to a lifelong affliction characterized by lifelong attacks upon the liver.

The disease mostly affects those who inject drugs and share needles, though it spreads by blood contact with any infected person. Historically, some have contracted Hepatitis C through transplanted organs and blood transfusions. However, in 1992 the United States began the widespread screening of the blood supply to prevent further instances.

Strains of the Hepatitis C (HCV) virus can vary by region, though it is most common in parts of East Asia and Africa.

The virus comes in three primary strains:

  • Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, and Hepatitis C.
  • All are viral infections that affect the liver. Each strain of hepatitis is caused by a different virus and each impacts the body differently.
  • Unlike Hepatitis C, Hepatitis A and B are both preventable by vaccine.

Hepatitis C may be either acute or chronic.

Acute Hepatitis C is a short-term illness that’s experienced within the first six months of being exposed to HCV. However, most who are afflicted with acute Hepatitis C will develop a chronic infection.

Chronic Hepatitis C is a long-term (often lifetime) illness that exists so long as the Hepatitis C virus remains within the body. Chronic infection of leads to serious liver issues, such as cirrhosis or liver cancer.

As of 2014:

  • 75% – 85% of those infected with acute Hepatitis C will develop a chronic infection
  • ~30,000 annual cases of acute Hepatitis were reported in the United States
  • Between 2.7 – 3.9 million people in the United States live with chronic Hepatitis C

That’s not all.

It can be difficult to assess if you have Hepatitis C because 70% – 80% of those with the virus do not show symptoms. The incubation period for HCV is between two weeks to six months, in which time no symptoms will show. Those who are acutely symptomatic are more likely to display signs.

Symptoms of Hepatitis C may include:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Clay-colored bowel movements
  • Dark urine
  • Fatigue
  • Fever
  • Jaundice (yellow discolorations on skin, around eyes)
  • Joint pain
  • Loss of appetite
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting

Because it’s often asymptomatic, few people are diagnosed with Hepatitis C in the acute phase. Even those with a chronic infection often go undiagnosed for many years – which is particularly dangerous. Why? Symptoms typically start to show in chronic sufferers decades later, at the point where symptoms are displaying serious damages to the liver. For this reason, screening for Hepatitis C is often necessary and can prevent harsh complications later.

How to Diagnose Hepatitis C

Specialty pharmacy for HEP C

Photo Credit from webmd.com

To test for Hepatitis C, there are two steps.

First, there’s a screening for anti-HCV antibodies in the blood. Second, and only if the first test is positive, a ribonucleic acid (RNA) test is used to confirm the presence of HCV. As 15% of people infected with Hepatitis C will develop a strong immune response and overcome the infection, this secondary measure is needed because though these individuals are no longer infected, they will still test positive for HCV antibodies.

Some infected with Hepatitis C will experience fluctuations in liver enzyme levels while others will have enzyme levels remain normal. For those with normal enzyme levels, a screening should be conducted a few times within a 6 – 12 month period.

If you’ve tested positive for Hepatitis C, the next step is to schedule an assessment of the liver to determine the extent of any damage such as cirrhosis and fibrosis. A variety of non-invasive tests or a liver biopsy is available. Next, laboratory tests should confirm which of the six genotypes of the Hepatitis C virus in present. Every genotype reacts to treatment from a specialty pharmacy differently, and it’s possible to become infected with more than one. Taking account of these factors will help guide further treatment.

Varied Treatment With Specialty Pharmacy for Hepatitis C Varied Depending on Damage Extent

fertility pharmacy Miami, Fl

Photo Credit healthdummy.org

Treatments for Hepatitis C varies because the extent of damage from HCV differs by person.

Some people’s immune system will clear the infection, while others will live with a chronic infection and develop no liver damage. Treatment is only necessary in some cases, though when treatment begins the goal is a total cure. The success of these curative treatments depends on the viral strain and types of treatment administered.

Standard care surrounding Hepatitis C is changing. Typically, Hepatitis C treatment constituted a therapy of interferon and ribavirin given as weekly injections for almost a full year. Historically, this treatment cured roughly half of all patients, though often resulted in life-threatening reactions.

Today, a host of new antiviral medications are available.

“This is a revolution in clinical medicine that we haven’t seen for decades, where you go from a really problematic complex therapy to a really simple, well-tolerated, highly curative therapy.” Professor Greg Dore, The Kirby Institute

Direct antiviral agents (DAA) are a class of much more safe, effective, and body-compatible drugs. Therapy using DAAs cures most recipients with Hepatitis C infection. Treatment is shorter – only 12 weeks usually – and is much safer. However, DAAs are very expensive in most developed countries and are often unavailable in lower-income regions. Low quantities in production have kept costs high, though generic versions of these medicines are becoming available in many areas.

“We’re talking about curing people with 98 percent success rate. It’s a whole new ball game.” — Dr. Ari Bunim, NY Hospital, Queens, NY

I can’t emphasize this enough.

If you’re diagnosed with Hepatitis C, you should be monitored by an experienced doctor who can help manage your treatments. Alcohol should be avoided to minimize additional liver damage. Consult your medical professional before taking any pills, medications, or engaging in new treatments – as these can provide liver-damaging complaints.

Hepatitis C Prevention

Since there’s no vaccine for Hepatitis C, prevention is the key safeguard against infection. Foremost, reduce your risk of exposure to the virus from blood-borne sources. Health-care settings and populations of intravenous drug users are the most prominent, through sexual contact with infected persons is a slight risk as well.

People can become infected with Hepatitis C through activities such as:

  • Sharing needles and other drug injection tools
  • Needle stockings from health care situations
  • Being born from a Hepatitis C infected mother

Other much less common possible Hepatitis C transfers can occur when:

  • Having sexual contact with a Hepatitis C infected person
  • Sharing personal care items that may come in contact with blood, such as toothbrushes or razors

Should You Get Tested for Hepatitis C?

retail pharmacy Miami, Fl

Image credit wikipedia.org

Certain groups of people are more likely to contract Hepatitis C, depending on when they were born, history of drug use, or pre-existing health issues.

You should ask your doctor or healthcare professional about being tested for Hepatitis C – if you satisfy one or more of these qualifications:

  • You are infected with HIV. A weakened immune system is particularly susceptible to liver damage.
  • You show abnormal liver enzyme levels or have liver disease. Existing liver issues will often raise awareness about Hepatitis C, so be sure to get tested if you’re experiencing liver complications or have a history of liver disease.
  • You partake in long-term hemodialysis treatment. Blood transfusions have historically carried the risk of Hepatitis C.
  • You work in the health care or public safety industries and have been stuck with a needle or other sharp object. Coming into contact with blood poses a distinct risk of Hepatitis C infection, so be sure to pursue testing if you’ve been stuck recently.
  • You are a current or former injection drug user. Even if it was years ago, the use of dirty needles is the primary means of infection for Hepatitis C. Consult a medical professional immediately for a test.
  • You received an organ transplant or blood transfusion before 1992. As of July 1992, the United States instituted a rigorous testing procedure of blood and organ banks. But previously, organ, tissue, and blood recipients risked contracting Hepatitis C from their donors.
  • You were treated for a blood clotting problem any time before 1987.
  • You were born between 1945 – 1965. Healthcare has made some sweeping advancements in the last half century, while older care procedures and techniques have exposed some individuals to infection. If you’re an aging citizen, it’s especially important to guard against cirrhosis and fibrosis from Hepatitis C.

Bottom line.

Closing Out

While Hepatitis C is not a widespread viral infection, it can be very damaging and dangerous to those afflicted and thus necessitates precautionary measures. As most who are infected show no symptoms until late-stage symptoms testify to liver damage, testing for Hepatitis C is strongly recommended.

“Most people are surprised when I say hepatitis C is pretty much totally curable now.” — David Baker, MD, and General Practitioner

Fortunately, the testing process has never been faster and easier in the days of the specialty pharmacy. Plus, a host of new medications has shortened treatment times while drastically increasing the chances of curing the virus.

Ultimately, taking caution against infection and safeguarding against off-chance infection is the safest policy regarding Hepatitis C. As we discussed at the beginning if testing and treatment work for daredevils and superstars, why would you wait?

 

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specialty pharmacy in Miami, FL

Image credit http://spcontinuum.com/

Founded in 2003 by Dr. Armando Bardisa, South Miami Pharmacy (SMP) aims to improve the quality of life for its customers and patients through personalized service.

To provide this individual service, SMP offers hard-to-find medications, compounding services, one-on-one fertility specialists, and medication therapy management for specialty pharmacy patients.

Serving patients in most of the 50 US states and many international countries, South Miami Pharmacy rebranded itself as SMP Pharmacy Solutions in 2015 to better reflect its global services. The company ships approximately 10,000 prescriptions each month from two Miami facilities and safe shipment of temperature-sensitive products is particularly critical to their focus on patient care and quality.

Fertility treatments are also a large segment of SMP’s business and most of these medications require refrigeration. Acknowledging that this is a highly sensitive and emotionally invested treatment for the patients they serve, product integrity is critically important to SMP.

Vice-president of SMP Pharmacy Solutions Brian Brito said: “Particularly during the summer months, we would receive calls from our patients stating that the ice packs were melted and they were not sure if the medications were still effective and safe to use.

Plus, we also needed to implement this cold chain procedure for our specialty pharmacy accreditation and state requirements.”

Click HERE to read the full press release.

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