About Dr. Joe GalatiDr. Joe Galati is a Liver Specialist practicing in Houston, Texas. His practice, Liver Specialists of Texas is dedicated to the care of patients with all facets of liver disease.
by Dr. Joe Galati on 04/25/2015
by Dr. Joe Galati on 04/18/2015
For the past year, we have seen an explosion of new, highly effective therapies for hepatitis C, now with the ability to cure the virus. Yes, we can now say CURE. All of the companies involved in hepatitis C therapy have developed a wide range of print, radio, and television ads. The goal is to increase awareness, one of the major problems those of us that treat HCV find. There are more people yet to be diagnosed with hepatitis C, than those already diagnosed and treated. Getting the word out to get tested is still a struggle.
The messages thus far have varied in their content, including “Breaking the Silence” (Janssen-makers of Olysio/Simeprevir), “Take Action Now” (AbbVie-makers of Viekira Pak), and “Forget Me Not” (Gilead-makers of Sovaldi). Now, Gilead with their latest commercial, for the first time, directly states the name of their product, and outlines the near 99% cure rate one can expect, and the minimal side effects patients experience. The “I am Ready” campaign hopes to alert all those living with hepatitis C, it’s time to get treated. Putting aside the bad memories of interferon, and other complicated therapies, that were indeed toxic, these new era therapies are highly effective, with the most minimal side effects. Patients have told me that the very fear of the therapy, and the wicked side effects, have prevented them from coming forward for treatment. This is a shame, and should not even be considered any further. Having treated several hundred patients thus far with Harvoni and the other current medicines, we are truly in a golden era where we can eradicate HCV, and prevent all of the know complications, such as cirrhosis and liver cancer.
Call us if you are ready to be treated.
Watch the vidoe below.
by Dr. Joe Galati on 03/29/2015
by Dr. Joe Galati on 03/02/2015
Dr. Rashid Khan will be joining Liver Specialists of Texas in July 2015.
Originally from Karachi, Pakistan, he completed his medical school education at Dow Medical College, Karachi, the second oldest medical school in the country. Following medical school, Dr. Khan was an Intern and Resident in Internal Medicine at the University of Texas Health Science Center-Houston. He completed his Gastroenterology training at the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston, Texas, under the direction of Dr. Don Powell and Dr. Roger Soloway. Wanting to further his education in liver disease, he completed his training in Transplant Hepatology at the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, under the direct mentorship of Dr. John Vierling.
During Dr. Khan’s training, he participated in a number of research studies related to liver disease and the complications of cirrhosis. Dr. Khan also has two years of prior experience of working as a Transplant Hepatologist at the Liver Transplant program at the University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston.
When not practicing medicine, Dr. Khan enjoys spending time with his young family. His hobbies include travelling, and playing and watching basketball and soccer. He is excited about joining Dr. Galati and the Liver Specialists of Texas team. He shares in Dr. Galati’s vision in providing exceptional and compassionate patient care, and in providing the highest level of care to patients with all facets of liver disease and digestive disorders.
To make an appointment with Dr. Khan, call 713-794-0700.
by Dr. Joe Galati on 02/01/2015
In those patients with liver disease and cirrhosis, maintaining a diet low in salt (also knows as sodium) can be difficult at times. With all the eating out that America does, this processed food is overloaded with salt and sodium. Thus, it is nearly impossible to maintain a diet low in sodium. Usually, the target goal is to consume less than 2,000 mg per day.
A list of common foods and their sodium content is posted below. Remember to read labels, and determine the “serving size”.
I have posted a new video on our YouTube page giving you all some suggestions on maintaining this low salt diet. Send me your comments.
Dr. Joe Galati
by Dr. Joe Galati on 11/11/2014
Wrapping up presentations at this years annual Liver Meetings in Boston, Dr. Eric Lawitz presented data on 2 new antiviral agents to treat chronic hepatitis C. This study looked at the more tough to treat populations.
These two drugs use in cirrhotic patients and those prior null responder to Peg-intron and ribavirin had between a 91-100% SVR.
The full article is posted in this weeks Lancet Journal.
Throughout the meeting, very encouraging data was presented about the very high cure rates we are seeing in hepatitis C. With no less than 6 new drugs being developed, in the months ahead, we will all see the slow evolution of these therapies, selecting specific drug combinations tailored to unique patient features, such as HCV genotype, prior response to therapy, presence or absence of cirrhosis, renal failure (with or without dialysis), HIV status, and whether the patient has had a liver transplant.
As with all of these therapies, cost will be factored into the course of treatment.
by Dr. Joe Galati on 11/09/2014
A research paper presented this morning at the AASLD Liver Meeting indicates that liver donors 80 years of age and older do just as well as those receiving a liver transplant from a donor less than 80 years old.
Considering the large number of patients awaiting liver transplant, and the associated limited number of suitable donors, resulting in unacceptable wait-list deaths, serious consideration should be given to accepting older donors, especially those over 80 years old.
by Dr. Joe Galati on 11/07/2014
As the treatments for chronic hepatitis C continue to expand, and provide a superior cure rate, the FDA has approved the combination of both Sovaldi(sofosbuvir) and Olysio (simeprevir) for treating HCV. We have been using this combination, but it was not officially approved, causing some insurance related issues for some patients.
Here is one of many press releases.
All this means is a superior cure rate, and help for those who suffer from chronic liver disease.
by Dr. Joe Galati on 10/23/2014
Harvoni, the newly FDA approved drug for chronic hepatitis C, is indicated for genotype 1 patients only. All others, at this time, are not approved. Additional new drugs are in the process of receiving FDA approval for the other genotypes.
While there is no official indication for treating post-liver transplant patients, many experienced physicians will evaluate post liver transplant patients with recurrent hepatitis C.
For patients interested in being treated, it is important that your old records from prior treatments are available. We would need to be aware of your prior response to treatment.
In conversations with patients the past couple of weeks, they are amazed that there is no use of interferon and ribavirin, which was always a concern because of the numerous serious side effects. With Harvoni, side effects include fatigue, headache, nausea, diarrhea, and insomnia. Most of these occur between 3-14% of the times.
Overall, this remains an exciting time for everyone with HCV, realizing that a cute is within reach.
by Dr. Joe Galati on 10/21/2014
More information on the new Gilead drug Harvoni for patients with hepatitis C.
- Telaprevir and FDA Approval: The Race is On for New Hepatitis C Drugs 02/28/2011
- The MELD Score and Liver Transplant: An Update for Patients 02/02/2011
- Waiting for a Liver Transplant: My MELD Score is Low-Now What? 06/14/2012
- Take the Poll: Where Do You Get Your Health Information From? 04/25/2015
- “I am Ready” for Hepatitis C Treatment: New Harvoni TV Commercial 04/18/2015
- What Autopsies Can Teach: Melinda Beck from the Wall Street Journal 03/29/2015
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