Hepatitis C is an infectious disease caused by the hepatitis C virus (HCV) that primarily affects the liver. During the initial infection people often have mild or no symptoms. Occasionally a fever, dark urine, abdominal pain, and yellow tinged skin occurs.
The liver gets infected and inflamed in hepatitis C. This condition takes place after getting infected by HCV or hepatitis C virus, which may either be chronic or acute in nature. The acute hepatitis C symptoms have quite a rapid onset and may last for some weeks. The chronic hepatitis C on the other hand has symptoms which develop through a period of few months which might not be apparent initially. Hepatitis C unlike A and B does not have a vaccine, even though efforts for creating one are still on going.
Hepatitis C can be highly contagious, which explains the high incidence of people having this disease. This disease can happen to anyone all across the globe. The doctor might not have sufficient evidence for diagnosing you with hepatitis C, solely based on symptoms of this disease. So it is necessary to inform your doctor if you have had a hepatitis C exposure recently. If the doctor thinks that you might have the virus, they might ask you to get a few blood tests to look for traces of HCV. Blood tests are used to measure the presence of HCV in the blood. Genotyping tests can be done to check the best treatment option for you, if you have been infected with this disease.
An LFT or a liver function test may be prescribed by your doctor if they think that you might have a damaged liver. This test is done for checking the blood and urine for traces of elevated enzymes. Liver biopsy is another test done for checking the imminent liver damage. For this, the doctor takes a small piece of tissue from the liver and tests it for any cell abnormalities.
Not everyone having hepatitis C infection will require treatment as the immune system in some people might overcome infections of their own accord.
There are quite a few treatment options for hepatitis C. Treatment is generally reserved for those having severe liver scarring and damage. Previous hepatitis C treatments needed weekly injections continuing over 48 weeks and had the risk of near fatal side effects. Newer antiviral medicines have greater cure rates and lesser harmful side effects. They also need a reduced treatment period.
The doctor is the only person who can decides if anti-viral medicines are more beneficial or harmful for your overall health. Normally, your doctor would ask you to get bed rest for saving energy for fighting off this disease. You should also ask your doctor for a diet plan for preventing dehydration and malnourishment. In some cases of hepatitis C, treatment may not be needed as the liver abnormalities are minor in case of this disease.hepatitis C Treatment