Hepatitis C is a disease that affects the liver. A simple test can determine if you are infected with the virus to determine if treatment is necessary for you. The long term effects of Hepatitis C can be terrible, if left untreated, and can even lead to liver failure. It is extremely important to get tested if you feel you may have Hepatitis C. Being diagnosed in the acute phase can mean that the disease may not become chronic, saving you from long term health complications.
Symptoms of Hepatitis C:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Exhaustion and extreme fatigue
- A fever or low grade fever
- Dark colored urine
- Decreased appetite
- Bowel movements that have a clay color
- An aching feeling where the liver is located on the lower right side of the body
- A slightly yellow coloring of the skin and eyes called jaundice
Hepatitis C Transmission
Hepatitis C is transmitted through bodily fluids, most commonly blood. It is most likely to contract Hepatitis C through sexual intercourse and the sharing of needles.
Type of Test Required for Diagnosis
A blood test is required to diagnose Hepatitis C. The test will detect antibodies in the blood stream that would not be present without the infection.
There are medications available to treat the symptoms of the Hepatitis C virus. If detected early, these medications can help prevent an acute infection from becoming chronic. Even in chronic patients, the medication will help relieve some of the long term symptoms.