Friday, February 23, 2024
Health

Hepatitis C: Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Treatment

A virus called hepatitis C can harm your liver. You can get the virus if hepatitis C-infected blood enters your body. While some people with hepatitis C can recover independently, most patients will require medicine to combat the infection. Hepatitis C can occasionally result in severe, perhaps fatal illnesses such as liver cancer and liver failure. You might not experience any symptoms of hepatitis C for years, or you could believe that any symptoms you have result from another illness or condition. Even if you don’t exhibit any symptoms, the virus can cause catastrophic liver damage.

Hepatitis C can cause symptoms such as:

High temperature, aches and pains, like having the flu

Feeling tired.

Feeling or being sick

Are you not feeling hungry?

Stomach pain

Jaundice (your skin or the whites of your eyes look yellow)

Brain fog

Itchy skin

Not everyone with hepatitis C will have these symptoms.

Getting tested is the only way to find out if you have Hepatitis C.

Do I need a test?

Anyone can get hepatitis C, and having it without knowing it is easy.

It is a good idea to get tested if:

You think you may have been exposed to hepatitis C.

You are more likely to get hepatitis C.

You have hepatitis C symptoms that do not go away or return.

You are more likely to get hepatitis C if:

You had a blood transfusion in the UK before September 1991.

You had an organ or tissue transplant in the UK before 1992.

You Have ever used drug paraphernalia, such as injection equipment, banknotes or snorts with straws, spoons or pipes.

Have you ever shared injection equipment for any medication?

Have you ever lived in, or had medical or dental treatment in, a country where hepatitis C is common

You have had a tattoo or piercing done with non-sterile equipment.

Your mother had hepatitis C.

You live with or have lived with, someone with hepatitis C.

You have had sex without a condom with someone who has hepatitis C.

The healthcare provider recommends testing for Hepatitis C whenever you get exposed to the virus. Even if you had Hepatitis C before, you can still get tested.

How is hepatitis C transmitted?

Only the blood of a person with Hepatitis C can transmit the virus to someone who does not have it. Regular contact cannot send viruses like hugging, kissing, or sharing cups, plates, or other utensils.

Some of the ways hepatitis C can be transmitted are:

Sharing injection equipment for any type of medication

From drug paraphernalia, such as injection equipment, banknotes or snorts with straws, spoons or pipes

Non-sterile tattoo, piercing or acupuncture equipment

Sharing things like razors, toothbrushes or hair clippers that may have blood on them.

We are having sex without a condom with someone with hepatitis C, but less likely unless it’s sexual activity that can infect someone with blood.

If you are pregnant and have hepatitis C, there is a meagre chance of passing it on to your baby.

Treatments for hepatitis C:

Rect-acting antiviral tablets are typically used to treat Hepatitis C. They are taken daily for eight to twelve weeks.

After therapy, more than 90% of patients will have a cure.

Most people experience few or no side effects, and taking the tablets is straightforward.

A healthcare provider may recommend alternative therapies if the medication for Hepatitis C does not cure the disease. You can handle the infection and look after your liver with its assistance.

Early therapy can lessen the risk of liver damage brought on by hepatitis C. However, treatment can begin at any moment.

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