Living with Hep B in the Solomon Islands

Hi All,

Many thanks @ThomasTu for this conversation and to all that have contributed. It has shared light and inspiration in times of worry and confusions in such situations for me.

My Name is Cornelius Vulumu, 29yr, from The South Pacific Ocean— of Solomon Islands. Pharmacist by profession for 5 years.

Was diagnosed with Hep B in 2018, resigned from work in 2018 got a scholarship to do Medicine in Taiwan. This was an opportunity of a lifetime to get proper medical checks from a Liver specialist in Taiwan, where medical bills are covered by the scholarship.

So I did get my liver checked by a gastroenterologist(which we don’t have in the Solomon’s such specialists and resources), liver scan showed hematoma 0.5mm size. The Dr said not to worry about it, it’s not related to the Hep B it will go away eventually,. Viral load came to 20,000,000 so we started on Entecavir for 2 months.

Unfortunately political ties between Solomon island Govt and Taiwan didn’t go well, so we have to be repatriated back home. So, yeah the frustration and worry is on going again​:man_facepalming:t5:. Haven’t done any viral load checks, and even NO (Entecavir)treatment for a year now! I only did a Liver scan in our Hospital here in the Solomon’s, which came out clear and normal, was surprised the radiographers here didn’t pick the hematoma, could it have vanished? Or the machines used are not to the standards of picking it up?:man_shrugging:t5:

If @John.Tavi or anyone could share some insight would be helpful.

Currently am working at a private chemist, not that am getting Entecavir by any chances, am reserved from getting it until I get a full routine liver check(what my gut says) but I can procure the meds, but I really need a specialist advice before doing so, when ethics comes into play!:man_facepalming:t5:

Am not feeling any discomfort or anything, am keeping my self physically fit and healthy BMI is well monitored at 23, so am good and healthy no complications or medical conditions, it’s just the Hep B that worries me.

Hope to hear from you all, your words and thoughts through sharing motivates are second each time.

Kind regards
Cornelius.

1 Like

Dear @Cornelius,

Thanks for the kind words and sharing your story. I’m so sorry to hear about your loss of opportunities because of politics that are out of your control.

Regarding your health situation, this really is outside my own expertise. Perhaps one of our @HealthExperts can give some indication about the hematoma and what is the best way to proceed regarding treatment and monitoring in this setting.

Thomas

1 Like

I hope you don’t mind @Cornelius that I have moved your post and given it its own topic now because I think it is important for it to have its own discussion.

Thomas

1 Like

Appreciate it @ThomasTu, as long as our voices are heard and shared among us whom are facing HpB together.

Hope to get further understanding on this from our professionals and specialists, furthermore our sharing and contributions will comfort us further as we go.

Cheers
Cornelius

1 Like

Dear @Cornelius

It sounds like the liver ultrasound (if that was what the liver scan was) probably showed a small hemangioma which is very common (a collection of blood vessels) and not of concern. (I presume it was 5mm as they wouldn’t be able to see something that was 0.5mm). If the specialist in Taiwan felt you should be on Entecavir then it was probably based on a combination of your viral load (very high) and your liver enzymes being elevated. In this situation entecavir is longterm treatment so if you are able to access treatment now you are back in Solomon Islands that would be best - however ideally in the circumstance that you can access ongoing treatment. There are some risks of stopping and starting treatment repeatedly. A/Prof Strasser, Liver Specialist Sydney.

1 Like

Thanks for the response and helpful advice, @simone.strasser!

@Cornelius , Prof Strasser is (among many other appointments) the president of the gastroenterology society of Australia, so knows what she’s talking about. I hope this helps your situation a bit.

Cheers,
Thomas

Dear @Simone.strasser

Thanks soo much for such a comprehensive knowledge and understanding towards my concern. It surely does explain it much.

I was also concerned on the risk of repeating Entecavir even though I have supplies.
Was thinking of getting a through liver review before commencing further treatment, which is unlikely to happen at this moment.
Staying optimistic and healthy living is paramount at the moment.

Regards
Cornelius

2 Likes