Today cure rates for hepatitis C infections are extremely high.
The first treatment for hepatitis C, a liver infection, came in the early 1990s. But back then, the cure rate was 6 percent and the harsh side effects often included flu-like symptoms.
Today’s treatments are up to 95 percent effective in clearing the hepatitis C virus. The therapy consists of daily pills taken for 8-12 weeks and causes few side effects.
Treatment once required a specialist, but can now be done by your family doctor.
The hepatitis C virus can cause inflammation and irritation of your liver, an organ essential for digesting food and getting rid of toxic substances. More than half of people with hepatitis C are unaware they have the virus, since they have no symptoms until the virus has taken a nasty, often irreversible, toll.
About 75-85 percent of people infected with hepatitis C will develop a chronic infection. If left untreated, chronic hepatitis C can cause a whole list of serious and potentially life-threatening health problems including the failure of your kidneys or liver, or permanent scarring. You can develop autoimmune diseases, or become more prone to life-threatening infections of the abdomen or bleeding in the esophagus or stomach.
The hepatitis C virus is usually spread through blood from an infected person. Today, most people become infected by sharing needles or other equipment to inject illegal drugs. Before widespread screening of the blood supply for the Hepatitis C virus began in 1992, the virus was commonly spread through blood transfusions and organ transplants, but screening virtually eliminated this source of infection.
|Read on: Treating hepatitis C early is important to prevent chronic infection|