Hep C

What Is Hep C?

Hep C is a serious disease caused by a virus that is spread through blood-to-blood contact. In recent years, there have been more deaths related to Hep C than to HIV.

You May Not Feel Sick

Some people with Hep C show symptoms while others live for years without any. But even if you don’t show any symptoms, Hep C can still cause damage to your liver.

If you have Hep C, you may (or may not) experience the following symptoms:

  • Feeling tired

  • Upset stomach

  • Yellow skin and eyes (jaundice)

  • Dark-colored urine

  • Weight loss

  • Bruising easily

Don’t wait for symptoms to appear. Talk to a healthcare professional as soon as possible about getting cured of Hep C.

Who Has Hep C?

If you’ve been diagnosed with Hep C, you’re not alone. An estimated 2.4 million people are living with Hep C in the United States. And over 1 million people have already been treated.

Anyone can get Hep C, yet many people don’t even know they have it because they show no symptoms.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) now recommends that all adults ages 18 and over get tested for Hep C.

How Hep C Is Spread

There are many ways Hep C can be spread, including:

  • Using drugs that involve needles or straws

  • Using unsterilized tattoo equipment

  • Having sex with a person infected with Hep C

  • Sharing personal items such as razors or toothbrushes

  • Receiving needlestick injuries in healthcare settings

  • Receiving a blood transfusion or organ transplant before 1992

  • Being born to a mother with Hep C

Why the Liver Is Important

Your liver is like a filter with a very important role in your health.

The liver keeps the nutrients your body needs and gets rid of the toxins it doesn’t.

Hep C attacks the liver and, over time, affects how well it does its job.

You can live with Hep C for years without knowing it, but the damage is still happening and can even lead to death.

Hep C is a major cause of liver transplants and liver cancer. However, treating your Hep C could help put a stop to the damage.

The longer you wait to treat Hep C, the more it can harm your liver.

Healthy Liver

Liver with Some Damage

Advanced Liver Damage


Unsterilized: Not completely clean.

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