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Hepatitis C

 

Hepatitis C is a disease causing inflammation of the liver.

Causes 

  • Hepatitis C virus
  • Contact with infected blood
  • Unscreened blood transfusions
  • Sharing needles
  • Unsterilized body piercing or tattooing tools
  • From infected mother to unborn child
  • Sometimes, having sexual contact with infected person

Symptoms
Hepatitis C can be asymptomatic most of the times. If present, symptoms may be generalized and include:

  • Fatigue
  • Weight loss
  • Ill health as in flu
  • Low grade fever
  • Muscle and joint pain
  • Generalized itching
  • Abdominal pain
  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea
  • Dark urine
  • Jaundice

Treatment
There is still no cure for hepatitis C but some patients may benefit from:

  • Interferon alpha
  • Combination of interferon alpha and ribavirin

Prevention

  • Screening and testing blood and organ donors
  • Avoid sharing needles
  • Avoid unsterilized piercing or tattooing tools
  • Avoid sharing toothbrushes and razors
  • Practice safe sex