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Health And Beauty Tips
3 Holiday Makeup Looks
Adverse food reactions
Allergic rhinitis
Anaphylactic shock adults
Anaphylaxis
Asthma
At the scene of an accident
Avoiding allergens
Babies failing to thrive
Back injuries
Bleeding
Children and young people
ColdMediDangerous Infants
Colds and flu
Disguise a Double Chin
Drinking Coffee Helps Fight Alzheimer's,
Drug allergy
Eczemas
Eye Allergies
Finding the time
Foods th8Lower Cholesterol
Grass-Fed Beef The Natural Alternative
Head Injury
Heart Attack
Heartburn
Help for Tired Eyes
Hepatitis C
How much exercise do I need
Injuries and treatment
Jaundice
Look Younger by Morning
Lung cancer cases
Maintaining  target weight
Makeup Tricks 4 Dark Skin
Match Makeup 2 Your Outfit
Moving on
Opening airway
Perfect Lipstick
Fixes CommonHair Problem
Recovery position
Risky Business for Teens
Sensible slimming
Sleep Disorders
Summer hay fever
Supporting someone with cancer
Tips to give up smoking
Treatment
Venom allergies
What's the right activity 4me
Why get fit
More Tips
 
 
 

 

 

 

 

                                                                                                

 

 

 

 

                                                      Health And Beauty

 

 
 

Hepatitis C

Inflammation of the liver - hepatitis - has many causes, including
several viruses. One of these is hepatitis C. There is currently no
vaccine, so it's important to avoid infection.

What is it?
Hepatitis C is an infection with the hepatitis C virus. Although there
is no vaccine to protect against infection, there is effective treatment
available.

Infection with the virus is often referred to as a hidden epidemic.
Estimates suggest about 200,000 people are infected with hepatitis
C in England, but eight out of ten are unaware they have it. This is
because it can take years, even decades, for symptoms to appear.

Even if you have no symptoms, you can still pass on the virus to others.

How's it spread?
Hepatitis C virus is usually transmitted through blood-to-blood contact.
One common route is through sharing needles when injecting recreational
drugs - around 35 per cent of people with the virus will have contracted
it this way.

Similarly, having a tattoo or body piercing with equipment that has not
been properly sterilised can lead to infection.

Before 1991, blood transfusions were a common route of infection.
However, since then all blood used in the UK has been screened
for the virus and is only used if not present.

It can be passed on through sharing toothbrushes and razors

Hepatitis C can be sexually transmitted, but this is thought to be
uncommon. A minority of people have been infected through
bodily fluids such as saliva, but this is rare. It can be passed on
through sharing toothbrushes and razors.

If someone needs a blood transfusion or medical treatment while
staying in a country where blood screening for hepatitis C is not routine,
or where medical equipment is reused but not adequately sterilised,
the virus may be transmitted.

In up to 50 per cent of cases, however, the origin of the infection is
never found. It's believed that the virus can't be transmitted through
normal social contact such as touching and sharing cups - you can't
catch hepatitis C from toilet seats either.

Symptoms
In most cases, the initial infection doesn't cause any symptoms.
When it does, they tend to be vague and non-specific.

Possible symptoms of hepatitis C infection include:

fatigue

weight loss

loss of appetite

joint pains

nausea

flu-like symptoms (fever, headaches, sweats)

anxiety

difficulty concentrating

alcohol intolerance and pain in the liver area

The most common symptom experienced is fatigue, which may
be mild but is sometimes extreme. Many people initially diagnosed
with chronic fatigue syndrome are later found to have hepatitis C.

Unlike hepatitis A and B, hepatitis C doesn't usually cause people
to develop jaundice.

In about 75 per cent of cases, the infection lasts for more than six
months (chronic hepatitis C). Most of these people have a mild form
of the disease with intermittent symptoms of fatigue or no symptoms at all.

About one in five people with chronic hepatitis C develops cirrhosis.
Those with chronic hepatitis C infection should be seen by a hospital
liver specialist who may recommend antiviral drug treatments either
as single drug therapy or as combination therapy.

Treatment
Whether treatment is needed, and if so which type, depends on a
number of factors. These include blood tests to identify which strain
of hepatitis C infection is present and how well the liver is functioning,
and a liver biopsy to establish whether cirrhosis is occurring.

Hepatitis C is treated with a combination of pegylated interferon
alpha and ribavirin.

Prevention
There are a number of ways to reduce the risk of the infection
being transmitted. Those most at risk of contracting the infection
are injecting drug users, who should never share needles or
other equipment.

Practising safe sex by using condoms is also important.

People with hepatitis C infection aren't allowed to register as an organ
or blood donor.

If you think you could have been in contact with the hepatitis C virus
at any point in the past, you can have a test to find out if you've been
infected. You should ask you GP. Local drug agencies and sexual
health clinics (sometimes called genito-urinary medicine or GUM
clinics) may also offer testing.
For further information, visit the NHS hepatitis C website.

There is also a hepatitis C information line on 0800 451451
(textphone 0800 085 0859). The lines are open from 10am to
10pm, seven days a week.

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