& have found this forum so useful since I was diagnosed with PBC at the beginning of July. So how did my diagnosis come about? A routine blood test about 8yrs ago showed some changes in the LFT specifically the Gamma GT. Needless to say when I was called in to see the GP to discuss the results I was asked how much alcohol I drank... he was a bit speechless when I told him I didn't drink alcohol! I was sent for an ultrasound scan & that showed a healthy liver, etc. About that time my thyroid was starting to become underactive, although the levels weren't quite at the point where I needed treatment.
Shortly after the scan I then moved to a different area which meant a change in GP. He referred me to gastroenterology, who I think did every blood test possible & none of them showed any abnormalities. A review appointment a year later still didn't show any abnormalities apart from the raised GP. At that appt, the possibility of a liver biopsy was mentioned if the Gamma GT continued to increase. 5 yrs of 6 mthly LFTs the GGT increased & when I was asked to return 3 wks later for a repeat blood the GGT had increased even further, this lead to a referral for a biopsy.
Saw the specialist in April who thought I might have an autoimmune condition - underactive thyroid, tested positive to antibodies & a family history of autoimmune probs. I also had a fibroscan carried out which showed no damage to the liver. Biopsy was carried out at the end of May & got the results at the beginning of July, I think I went round in a haze for the next couple of weeks!
Specialist informed be that I was at the early stages of the condition & not to worry to much about cirrhosis as that is rare. I was told about the PBC website, suggested I do some internet research & handed a leaflet from the British Liver Foundation. I was given a letter for my GP asking to prescribe me Urso 500mg twice a day & I started taking that the following week
Yes, it was a relief to find out there was something wrong with my liver, but shocked to read in the leaflet I was given that studies on Urso failed to show any direct impact on survival rates but may help keep people alive for longer. WHAT!!!!!! I hadn't thought I might have something that could kill me.
That was then....now I keep reminding myself that I am in the early stages & I'm relatively symptom free - some R. sided abdo discomfort & mild itching. I do become extremely tired at times & have some aches & pains. However I do have an underactive thyroid, pre-menopausal & suffer from depression. So how I feel could be down to ANYTHING! I hope my GP's up to the challenge of me appearing in the future complaining of various symptoms & trying to figure out between the 2 of us what it might be
The PBC website & forum have been great & I'm so pleased that they've been there over the past few weeks. Keep posting everyone, it really is good to hear everyone's experiences