Many people aren’t even aware of what Hepatitis C is, and few know about hepatitis c treatment and how to act once contracted. Hepatitis C comes in two forms, acute and chronic, and is characterized by an inflammation in the liver. It is a viral disease that affects as many as 130-170 million people worldwide, but because of the lack of awareness, many are completely unaware that they have it at all. There is no vaccination for Hepatitis C making it much more easy to contract than Hepatitis A or B.
There are only a few ways that you can contract Hepatitis C and that is through the transmission of infected blood. The ways in which it can be spread is through organ transplants, sharing of hygienic items such as toothbrushes or razors, blood transfusions, coming into contact with contaminated blood, IV needle sharing, or transmission from mother to child during birth. Although it can be spread through sexual intercourse, that is not a common mode of infection. Because there is no discernible symptom to separate the infection from other diseases, the only way to diagnose Hepatitis C is through a blood test for verification.
Hepatitis C treatment that is available for those with Hepatitis C infection depends on the severity of the disease itself, and how long it has been in your system. There are times when it can cause significant damage to your liver before it is discovered which means that not only do you have to be concerned with Hepatitis C treatment itself, you also have to treat the symptoms of the liver disease that it caused. Once the diagnosis of Hepatitis C has been made the clinician can do a genotyping test that will determine what is the best course of treatment of it. Along with the genotype test, a liver function test may lend more information about the overall best way to treat the disease.
There are many different forms of treatment for Hepatitis C, but they are dependent upon the type of infection experienced. For those who are experiencing the acute form, the treatment may be more effective than those who have the more severe chronic form, which may have already done irreparable damage to the liver organ. There continues to be much debate in the medical community about the course and the length of treatment for Hepatitis C. For those suffering from chronic Hepatitis C if there is no damage found to the liver, treatment may not be necessary. If there is liver damage, then a combination of varying medications are warranted to fight against the viral infection.
The medicines which are most commonly prescribed for Hepatitis C are interferons combined with ribavirin in combination with a protease inhibitor. They are prescribed usually for a length of six months to a year after official diagnosis. For those who do not start treatment, it is recommended that they have their liver examined every four to five years to make sure that it is not damaging the liver organ.