There are several types of hepatitis, including hepatitis C. Hep C is a virus that is transmitted through contact with infected blood. It’s possible for hepatitis C to result in serious liver damage, causing signs and symptoms like jaundice, fatigue and lower extremity swelling. However, thanks to medical advances and the compassionate care of doctors like those at MountainView Hospital, patients are enjoying better quality of life than ever before.
Myth: Hepatitis C is incurable
Hepatitis C is both treatable and curable. The newer anti-viral medications available can allow people to experience:
- Shorter treatment times
- Better outcomes
- Reduced risk of severe side effects
Patients are said to be cured of hepatitis C when there is no virus detectable in the blood 12 weeks after treatment has ended. However, patients should be advised that it’s still possible to get infected again or to suffer a relapse.
Myth: Hepatitis C can’t spread through sexual contact
It’s possible to contract hepatitis C during sex, although it isn’t common. It may be more likely to contract the virus during sex if you have multiple sexual partners or partners infected with HIV.
Most often, this virus is transmitted by sharing needles or syringes for injecting drugs. Healthcare workers are also at a higher risk, given the prevalence of accidental needlestick injuries. Infants can contract the disease if their mothers have it.
Myth: Hepatitis C is always a chronic disease
Hepatitis C always begins as an acute infection. The acute phase often doesn’t cause noticeable symptoms, and so it may go undiagnosed.
Sometimes, the virus clears itself from the body after the acute phase, which is called spontaneous viral clearance. It’s also treatable with anti-viral medications.
Acute hepatitis can progress to chronic hepatitis C, but this doesn’t happen in every case. Chronic hepatitis C can cause serious liver damage.
MountainView Hospital is your partner in health. Whatever your diagnosis is, we’re here to support you every step of the way with superior, patient-centered care and exceptional patient education. You can call (702) 962-5021 to speak with a registered nurse at our medical center in Las Vegas any time of the day or night.