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Lisa, MSN, FNP-BC, CCRN, Nurse Practitioner
Category: Health
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Experience:  Board Certified Family Nurse Practitioner
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My husband has hep c, he also had a back injury and has bad

Resolved Question:

My husband has hep c , he also had a back injury and has bad disk, he was taking vicoden for a while but we just found out that they are the worst for your liver. My question is what pain med doesnt effect the liver, and is ok for someone with hep c to take.
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  Lisa, MSN, FNP-BC, CCRN replied 7 years ago.

Thank you for writing in today. Yes, Vicodin in large amounts or for long periods of time can cause some problems with the liver. This is primarily related to the Acetaminophen (Tylenol) in the Vicodin. However, even with Hepatitis C, Vicodin for a short period of time can be tolerated by some patients without any problems. The important thing to consider is your husband's liver function tests. Your husband may actually fluctuate between normal and abnormal results or he may be stable with low abnormal levels. His provider likely reviewed his labs before prescribing Vicodin or may have prescribed a lower dose or frequency regimen. At any rate, since he will be taking the Vicodin for a period of time, you may want to request that his liver function test be repeated while taking the medication, to ensure that there is no negative effect. Also, I would encourage you to discuss this concern with his provider. However, again, Vicodin can be tolerated by some patient's with Hep C, but your concern is understandable. I hope this helps. Finally, I want to provide you with a link that discusses Acetaminophen and the liver, including Hep C. This may help you understand the situation more fully.

If you have additional questions or need clarification, please let me know. Lisa
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
What pain med does not hurt the liver? is there another one out there..
Expert:  Lisa, MSN, FNP-BC, CCRN replied 7 years ago.

Thank you for responding. There are a few alternative options, particularly medications that do not contain Tylenol. For example, Vicoprofen has the same hydrocodone as Vicodin, but it is combined with Ibuprofen rather than the Tylenol. However, again, some patient's with Hep C can tolerate Vicodin without any serious problems, but, at any rate, this is definitely worth discussing with his provider. I hope this helps. Lisa
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