CDC considering recommending Hepatitis C test for boomers
A bus promoting testing for Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C drives through Leicester Square in London on May 18, 2009.
May 18th, 2012
01:34 PM ET

CDC considering recommending Hepatitis C test for boomers

It's a "silent epidemic," an "unrecognized health crisis," according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. And it's affecting 2.1 million baby boomers in the United States.

The CDC announced Friday that it is considering recommending Hepatitis C testing for everyone born between 1945 and 1965. Currently the CDC recommends this testing only for those who are at-risk - people who participated in intravenous drug use or had a blood transfusion before 1992, when screening was implemented.

But such events probably happened decades ago for this population, who may not recall the exposures that place them at risk, says Dr. John Ward, director of the division of viral hepatitis at the CDC.  And those that do remember may not be offering up such information to their primary care physicians.

“I’m not sure everybody is going to acknowledge to their doctors that they used drugs in their 20s," says Dr. Michael Ryan, co-chair of the American Gastroenterological Association's I.D. Hep C awareness campaign.

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