Hepatitis C or HCV is a virus that is transmitted through contaminated blood. It is considered a sexually transmitted disease since it can be acquired while having sexual intercourse. Detecting it is difficult since years can go by without developing symptoms, which is why it is vital to get tested in this regard, to know what hepatitis C is and how to detect it.
Here you will better understand what this disease is, symptoms, causes, what treatment there is and how it can affect your life in case you are infected. If you want to know if you are infected, have symptoms or think you have been exposed to the virus, do not hesitate to take the test and clear up any doubts.
According to the World Health Organization, each year more than one and a half million people are infected each year and in total there are more than 58 million people infected. Every year around 300,000 people die from hepatitis C. There is currently no vaccine.
This virus causes inflammation in the liver and can lead to irreversible liver damage. As the Mayo Clinic explains, this is usually a silent disease until, after many years, it begins to show effects such as:
- Dark-colored urine
- Leg swelling
- Bleed more easily than normal
- Appearance of bruises
- Lack of appetite
- Yellow coloration of eyes and skin
- Confusion and trouble speaking
- Spider veins
When the infection becomes chronic, hepatitis begins with an acute phase. These appear one to three months after being exposed to the virus and last between two weeks and three months.
On the other hand, about 30% of infected people eliminate the virus spontaneously, without the need for any type of treatment.
There are many ways to get hepatitis C. The most common causes are the improper use of medical supplies in health facilities, especially with the use of needles and syringes. Also, by blood transmission, sexual intercourse without a condom or the irresponsible use of injectable drugs.
Detection and treatment
Until a few years ago, the treatment required weekly injections and medications that used to have strong side effects. However, for some time this has changed and now it is possible to follow a treatment of 2 to 6 months based on pills that can cure you.
Even so, for the treatment to be successful and there are no consequences in your life, it is vital that an early detection is made. With this test you can find out if you have hepatitis C, among 6 other sexually transmitted diseases, and, if you test positive for any, start treatment as soon as possible and above all avoid infecting other people.