It can take years before hepatitis c symptoms manifest themselves and, many times, they do not appear at all. All three variants of hepatitis, i. E. A, B, and C, cause serious inflammation of the liver. The infection often occurs as a result of certain medications, poisonous toxins in the liver, or drinking large amounts of alcohol. The HCV (Hepatitis C Virus) is responsible for the C type.
If inflammation persists, the disease becomes chronic, which means that it will become a long-term health condition. If this occurs, the patient will likely be vulnerable to serious liver disease that will frequently be fatal. Of most hepatitis cases, 75 percent of infections are caused by the C virus. In the case of liver failure, the patient’s only hope is a liver transplant.
Like all cases of hepatitis, the C virus is contagious. It is transmitted through blood and the most common mode is via contaminated syringes used by drug addicts. Even somebody who used a syringe for recreational drugs only once is at risk of developing hepatitis C.
Less common causes of transmission are from mother to infant during childbirth, sexual intercourse with an infected partner, or having multiple sex partners. You can contract the disease when you share eating utensils, nail clippers, razors, and also other personal items with an infected person. On the other hand, you will not get hepatitis when you live with an infected person, touch them, or be near them.
The alarming fact in regards to this disease is that 80 percent of individuals with it don’t even know they are infected. This is due to the fact that it normally shows no symptoms and, when it does, they might only appear between 10 and 20 years after being infected. Even then, the symptoms might be erratic, vague, and mild. Often, by this time, the liver is already seriously damaged.
Occasionally, symptoms are shown within the early phase of infection. They normally happen 5-12 weeks after exposure to the virus. They can very best be described as typical flu symptoms. Typical ones consist of vomiting, nausea, loss of appetite, diarrhea, pain under the right side of the rib cage, fatigue, pale stools, dark colored urine, and jaundice.
Cirrhosis of the liver can typically occur with chronic cases of HCV. This is a condition that generally affects alcoholics. If cirrhosis develops, further damage occurs simply because tough fibrous tissue replaces the liver’s healthy tissues. Over time, this will cause complete liver failure and loss of all the organ’s functions. Symptoms of cirrhosis include confusion, hallucinations, vomiting blood, fluid retention, weight loss, persistent jaundice, itchy skin, swelling of the limbs and belly, and sleep disturbances.
As mentioned earlier, hepatitis c symptoms don’t always present themselves early, if at all, as a result this disease might be known as a silent killer. Anybody who has it can manage it with some necessary lifestyle changes. A healthy diet is important, as is regular exercise, and medical support. Additionally, alcohol need to be avoided completely. Further liver damage may be prevented if this regime is adhered to. It is also advisable to be vaccinated against the B and A viruses.