Pamela Anderson and a three-week cure for hepatitis C

Pamela Anderson was cured of hepatitis C after a 15-year infection. (pubic domain photo)

Pamela Anderson was cured of hepatitis C after a 15-year infection. (pubic domain photo)

Baywatch star Pamela Anderson reported this week that her hepatitis C is gone.

Presumably, the Baywatch star’s cure came from an advanced antiviral combination. Currently, the most widely used is Harvoni. Most patients take it for 12 weeks.

Brenda Goodman announced Pamela’s good news in WebMD and reported that a three-week cure may be coming. That would be very good news.

Baywatch ran from 1989 to 1999 and morphed into Baywatch Hawaii.

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee talks about hepatitis C

I just had the great pleasure of meeting a man who guided the early years of some of the most sensational music of the Baby Boom generation.

Andrew Loog Oldham started managing the Rolling Stones in 1963, when they were first stomping their feet on the world stage. He has also produced many rock and roll hits and has written books about his life before, during, and after the Rolling Stones. Andrew was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame last year.

We enjoyed chai tea together yesterday at Terra Breads in Olympic Village, Vancouver. Andrew was looking fit and relaxed. He had just come back from sessions of pilates and rolfing. He is in his second week of Harvoni treatment.

Thirty years after he ended his time with the Stones, Andrew learned he had hepatitis C. His drug-using days were over and he was dedicated to getting healthy. Doctors recommended interferon treatment, but he instinctively stayed away from it, he said.

Chances are close to perfect that Andrew won’t have hep C much longer. Chances also are that you will want to read the book he is writing about his life and experience with hepatitis C. I’ll let you know when it’s available.

A hockey hero who tackled hepatitis C

"Billy" Demish plays hockey in Medicine Hat. This photo was taken a few years ago when Bill was in his mid-70s, playing for an old timers team.

“Billy” Demish plays hockey in Medicine Hat. This photo was taken a few years ago when Bill was in his mid-70s, playing for an old timers team.

Last night I had the pleasure of talking with Bill Demish. Bill is a hero. Heroes, in my book, are people who have endured hepatitis C, health professionals and advocates who support the hep C community, and in particular, people who went through treatment with interferon. Bill went through treatment twice with the dreaded drug.

A hockey injury in 1986 led to his infection. He took a hard fall that caused internal bleeding. That led to a transfusion. Fifteen years later he received a letter suggesting he get tested for hepatitis C. Bill learned he had hep, was treated twice before he was cured, and was left with cirrhosis. He was among thousands of Canadians who were part of the class action suit against the Red Cross, the Government of Canada, and the provinces, which were accused of allowing transfusions of tainted blood.

Bill received a small settlement from the law suit. Although the deadline for initial claims is over, if you have just learned of your infection, you can still make a claim.