Friday, December 2, 2022

Hepatitis C Symptoms How Do You Get It

Can Bleach Or Cleaner Kill Hepatitis A

How Do You Get Hepatitis C?

Disinfectant that contains bleach can kill the hepatitis A virus on hard non-porous surfaces like toilet seats. However, freezing does not kill HAV.

If you cook food that is contaminated for one minute at cooking temperatures higher than 185ºF , it will kill HAV. However, food can be contaminated after cooking, so it is very important to wash your hands well with soap and water.

Living With Hepatitis C

Coping with hepatitis C isnt easy. You may feel sad, scared, or angry. You may not believe you have the disease. These feelings are normal, but they shouldnt keep you from living your daily life. If they do or if they last a long time you may be suffering from depression. People who are depressed have most or all of the following symptoms nearly every day, all day, for 2 weeks or longer:

  • Feeling sad, hopeless and having frequent crying spells.
  • Losing interest or pleasure in things you used to enjoy .
  • Feeling guilty, helpless, or worthless.
  • Thinking about death or suicide.
  • Sleeping too much or having problems sleeping.
  • Loss of appetite and unintended weight loss or gain.
  • Feeling very tired all the time.
  • Having trouble paying attention and making decisions.
  • Having aches and pains that dont get better with treatment.
  • Feeling restless, irritated, and easily annoyed.

Talk to your doctor if you notice any of these symptoms. Your doctor can help by recommending a support group or a therapist. He or she may also prescribe a medicine for you to take.

Preventing The Spread Of Hepatitis C

There is no vaccine available to prevent a person from being infected with hepatitis C. Recommended behaviours to prevent the spread of the virus include:

  • Always use sterile injecting equipment. This can be accessed from your local needle and syringe program service.
  • Avoid sharing personal items such as toothbrushes, razors, nail files or nail scissors, which can draw blood.
  • If you are involved in body piercing, tattooing, electrolysis or acupuncture, always ensure that any instrument that pierces the skin is either single use or has been cleaned, disinfected and sterilised since it was last used.
  • If you are a healthcare worker, follow standard precautions at all times.
  • Wherever possible, wear single-use gloves if you give someone first aid or clean up blood or body fluids.
  • Although hepatitis C is not generally considered to be a sexually transmissible infection in Australia, you may wish to consider safe sex practices if blood is going to be present, or if your partner has HIV infection. You may wish to further discuss this issue and personal risks with your doctor.

Also Check: What Is A Hepatitis Panel

Who Is Likely To Be Affected By Hepatitis A

Certain people are more at risk than others for hepatitis A. These include:

  • People who use recreational drugs, both injected and non-injected types.
  • Men who have sex with men.
  • People who have close contact with someone who already is infected.
  • People who have close contact with someone adopted from a country where hepatitis A is common, or people who travel to countries where hepatitis A is common.
  • People who work with non-human primates.
  • People who have clotting factor issues, including hemophilia.
  • People who work in child care, or children who are in childcare.

What Is Viral Hepatitis

Know The ABC

In general terms, hepatitis means inflammation of the liver. Hepatitis is not one, but many diseases in which the liver becomes inflamed, and its cells are damaged as a result of inflammatory chemicals being produced and released in the liver.

Though hepatitis commonly results from one of five recognized hepatitis viruses A, B, C, D, or E it can also be caused by excessive alcohol, toxins, an unhealthy diet, various drugs, autoimmune diseases, metabolic disorders, poisons, fungal infections, and certain other viral infections , as well as some diseases of the biliary system.

Some forms of hepatitis are sudden and short-term while others are long-lasting and sometimes lifelong. While some types can become life-threatening, others have few or no long-lasting effects.

Also Check: How Does Hepatitis A Spread

Hepatitis C Testing And Diagnosis

Doctors will start by checking your blood for:

Anti-HCV antibodies: These are proteins your body makes when it finds the hep C virus in your blood. They usually show up about 12 weeks after infection.

It usually takes a few days to a week to get results, though a rapid test is available in some places.

The results can be:

  • Nonreactive, or negative:
  • That may mean you donât have hep C.
  • If youâve been exposed in the last 6 months, youâll need to be retested.
  • Reactive, or positive:
  • That means you have hep C antibodies and youâve been infected at some point.
  • Youâll need another test to make sure.
  • If your antibody test is positive, youâll get this test:

    HCV RNA: It measures the number of viral RNA particles in your blood. They usually show up 1-2 weeks after youâre infected.

    • The results can be:
    • Negative: You donât have hep C.
    • Positive: You currently have hep C.

    You might also get:

    Liver function tests: They measure proteins and enzyme levels, which usually rise 7 to 8 weeks after youâre infected. As your liver gets damaged, enzymes leak into your bloodstream. But you can have normal enzyme levels and still have hepatitis C. Learn the reasons why you should get tested for hepatitis C.

    What Is The Prognosis For Someone Who Has Hepatitis C

    You can continue to lead an active life even if you are diagnosed with hepatitis C. People with the disease can work and continue their regular daily activities. However, it is very important that you see a specialist as soon as you are diagnosed with hepatitis C. There are many treatments available that can cure the virus.

    To maintain a healthy lifestyle, patients should:

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    Encouraging Others To Get Tested For Hepatitis C

    While the odds of passing on the hepatitis C virus are low, you should still tell anyone at risk that you have hepatitis C. You should tell sexual partners, spouses, and family members. Your infection may be difficult to discuss, but anyone at potential risk must know. That way, they can get tested and treated if needed. Read more on why you should get tested for hepatitis C.

    Show Sources

    Paul Berk, MD, professor of medicine and emeritus chief of the division of liver disease, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York City chairman of the board, American Liver Foundation.

    Alan Franciscus, executive director, Hepatitis C Support Project and editor-in-chief of HCV Advocate, San Francisco.

    Thelma King Thiel, chair and CEO, Hepatitis Foundation International.

    David Thomas, MD, professor of medicine, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, Baltimore.

    Howard J. Worman, MD, associate professor of medicine and anatomy and cell biology, College of Physicians and Surgeons, Columbia University, New York City.

    The American Gastroenterological Association.

    What Are The Symptoms Of Hepatitis C

    Woman’s Doctor: Why it’s important to screen for Hepatitis C

    You may have hepatitis C and not have any signs or symptoms.

    For those who do have symptoms, you may experience:

    • fever
    • nausea and vomiting
    • jaundice

    Hepatitis C can lead to liver damage, as it causes swelling . This swelling causes scarring of the liver, which affects how the organ functions.

    Liver scarring can worsen . This increases your chances of getting liver cancer.

    How quickly your liver undergoes damage will depend on if you:

    About 60% to 70% of people with hepatitis C do not develop symptoms until their liver has already been damaged.

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    Causes Of Noninfectious Hepatitis

    Although hepatitis is most commonly the result of an infection, other factors can cause the condition.

    Alcohol and other toxins

    Excess alcohol consumption can cause liver damage and inflammation. This may also be referred to as alcoholic hepatitis.

    The alcohol directly injures the cells of your liver. Over time, it can cause permanent damage and lead to thickening or scarring of liver tissue and liver failure.

    Other toxic causes of hepatitis include misuse of medications and exposure to toxins.

    Autoimmune system response

    In some cases, the immune system mistakes the liver as harmful and attacks it. This causes ongoing inflammation that can range from mild to severe, often hindering liver function. Itâs three times more common in women than in men.

    Chronic Hepatitis C Symptoms

    If you donât get diagnosed and treated, you could have the disease for years and not know it. Doctors call this the chronic form, because it lasts a long time. Some people who’ve had it for a while get scarring of the liver, which is called cirrhosis. or liver cancer.

    In addition to the above symptoms, signs that your liver isnât working the way it should include:

    • Ascites — fluid buildup in your belly
    • Easy bleeding
    • Hepatic encephalopathy — confusion, drowsiness, and slurred speech
    • Jaundice of the skin

    Read Also: Hepatitis B And C Difference

    What Are The Different Types Of Hepatitis C

    Hepatitis C can be acute or chronic. How long you experience symptoms will depend on the type you have.

    Acute hepatitis C involves more short-term symptoms that typically last 6 months or less but acute hepatitis often leads to chronic hepatitis. When hepatitis C lasts longer than 6 months, its considered chronic.

    Without treatment, you may have chronic hepatitis your whole life, since your body often cant get rid of the virus easily. Some people do get better without treatment, although treatment can go a long way toward improving the outlook.

    Hepatitis C wont necessarily become chronic.

    As a matter of fact, for anywhere from 15 to 45 percent of people with acute hepatitis C, the virus will clear up without treatment. In other words, if you dont have any symptoms, hepatitis C could improve on its own before you ever know you have it.

    However, if your body cant get rid of the hepatitis C virus, the infection wont go away. Instead, it will become chronic, or long-term.

    Experts arent sure why some people develop the chronic form of the disease and others dont. But more than half of all people with the hepatitis C virus will eventually develop the chronic form, according to the

    Since hepatitis C symptoms can resemble those of other health conditions, your symptoms alone if you have any may not make it clear that you have hepatitis C.

    A doctor or other healthcare professional may recommend getting tested if you:

    • daclatasvir

    Causes And Risk Factors

    Liver Problems â Dr. Yasir Unani Herbal Hospital &  Research Center

    HCV causes hepatitis C. People contract the virus through blood-to-blood contact with contaminated blood. For transmission to occur, blood containing HCV must enter the body of a person without HCV.

    A speck of blood, invisible to the naked eye, can carry hundreds of hepatitis C virus particles, and the virus is not easy to kill.

    The report the following risk factors for developing hepatitis C:

    • using or having used injectable drugs, which is currently the most common route in the U.S.
    • receiving transfusions or organ transplants before 1992, which is before blood screening became available
    • having exposure to a needle stick, which is most common in people who work in healthcare
    • being born to a mother who has hepatitis C

    The CDC offer advice on cleaning syringes if it is not possible to use clean and sterile ones. Although bleach can kill the HCV in syringes, it may not have the same effect on other equipment. Boiling, burning and using alcohol, peroxide, or other common cleaning fluids to wash equipment can reduce the amount of HCV but might not stop a person from contracting the infection.

    It is extremely dangerous to inject bleach, disinfectant, or other cleaning products, so people should make sure they rinse the syringe thoroughly. A person should only ever use bleach to clean equipment if new, sterile syringes and equipment are not available.

    People who are at risk due to these factors can have screening to rule out HCV.

    • peginterferon alfa-2a
    • sofosbuvir

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    What Effects Does Hepatitis C Have During Pregnancy

    Hepatitis C can be passed on from a pregnant woman to her child during pregnancy and birth, but this is rare. The risk of passing hepatitis on is slightly higher for mothers with both HIV and hepatitis C .

    Antivirals used to treat hepatitis are not currently recommended for pregnant women. This is because there isnt enough information to know if the drugs are safe for your unborn baby.

    If you have hepatitis C and are pregnant speak to your doctor. They will be able to give you advice on how to keep yourself and your baby safe during pregnancy and birth.

    If youre planning to have a baby, your doctor may recommend that you treat the hepatitis C before you get pregnant.

    Breastfeeding with hepatitis C is considered safe. But if you have cracked or bleeding nipples, its generally recommended to stop breastfeeding until they have healed.

    Staying Healthy With Hepatitis

    Not everyone needs treatment right away, but its important to be monitored regularly by an experienced doctor and discuss treatment options of the best way to keep you healthy.

    • Get vaccinated against Hepatitis A and Hepatitis B
    • Avoid alcohol and drugs
    • Eat a healthy & balanced diet. Include a lot of vegetables and fruits try to stay away from too much salt, sugar and fat.
    • Exercise regularly. Walking is one of the best exercises, and it helps to make you feel less tired.
    • Check with a health professional before taking any prescription pills, supplements, or over-the-counter medications.
    • Do not share razors, nail clippers, needles or other items that come in contact with blood with other people.

    Read Also: How Much Is A Hepatitis A Shot

    What To Do If You Have Hepatitis A Symptoms

    If you have been exposed to hepatitis A and show the symptoms above, you need to contact your doctor and/or your local health department as soon as you can, according to the CDC. Once you get to see your doctor, they will run a blood test to confirm the infection diagnosis. Typically, health professionals want to see a patient within two weeks of viral exposure.

    The two-week window is important because doctors can help treat hepatitis A with a single dose of the viral vaccine. But treatment only works within the first two weeks of exposure/infection.

    Recommended Reading: Why Does Hepatitis Cause Joint Pain

    Hepatitis C Symptoms And Treatment

    How Do You Get Hepatitis C?

    Hepatitis C is part of a group of hepatitis viruses that attack the liver. It is commonly found in infected blood. It is also rarely found in semen and vaginal fluids.

    The virus is usually passed on through using contaminated needles and syringes or other items with infected blood on them. It can also be passed on through unprotected sex, especially when blood is present.

    It often has no noticeable symptoms. Some peoples bodies can clear the infection on their own but others may develop chronic hepatitis C and will need to take antiviral treatment to cure the infection and prevent liver damage.

    • The basics
  • Test your knowledge of STIs
  • Also Check: Hepatitis C Mode Of Transmission

    How Common Is Hepatitis C In The United States

    In the United States, hepatitis C is the most common chronic viral infection found in blood and spread through contact with blood.14

    Researchers estimate that about 2.7 million to 3.9 million people in the United States have chronic hepatitis C.13 Many people who have hepatitis C dont have symptoms and dont know they have this infection.

    Since 2006, the number of new hepatitis C infections has been rising, especially among people younger than age 30 who inject heroin or misuse prescription opioids and inject them.15,16

    New screening efforts and more effective hepatitis C treatments are helping doctors identify and cure more people with the disease. With more screening and treatment, hepatitis C may become less common in the future. Researchers estimate that hepatitis C could be a rare disease in the United States by 2036.17

    What Is The Prognosis/outlook For Patients Who Have Hepatitis A

    Most cases of hepatitis A are short-lived, but the disease doesnt always look the same for everyone. Some people have short illnesses that only last a few weeks and have mild symptoms. Others can be very ill for several months. Hepatitis A is rarely fatal, but death has happened due to liver failure brought on by HAV. This tends to happen more often in people who are over 50 years old or and in people who have another liver condition.

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    Ive Never Used Iv Drugs Or Been Stuck With A Dirty Needle How Did I Get Hepatitis C

    Hepatitis C is usually spread through direct contact with the blood of a person who has the disease. It can also be transmitted by needles used for tattooing or body piercing. In rare cases, hepatitis C can be passed from a mother to her unborn baby. This virus can be transmitted through sex and sharing razors or toothbrushes. These occurrences are also rare. Many times, the cause of hepatitis C is never found.

    Other Causes Of Hepatitis

    Hepatitis C

    Many drugs can cause hepatitis. Some include the antifungal ketoconazole, certain oral contraceptives, ibuprofen, an antibiotic called nitrofurantoin, an antidepressant known as amitriptyline, the anti-hypertensive treatments methyldopa and nifedipine, the antiarrhythmic amiodarone, and the aesthetic gas halothane.

    A variety of common environmental toxins can cause hepatitis. These include:

    • Amatoxin-containing mushrooms
    • Carbon tetrachloride, a dry cleaning agent also used in fire extinguishers
    • Chloroform, used in refrigerants, propellants, resins, and as a solvent
    • Paracetamol, aka acetaminophen
    • Trichloroethylene, an industrial solvent used to remove grease from fabricated metal parts, some textiles, as a refrigerant, and fumigant
    • Yellow phosphorous, an industrial toxin

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