Hepatitis is a serious infection that affects the liver. It is contagious and is caused by a virus. It can lead to serious, long-term illnesses. There are different types of hepatitis viruses, including hepatitis A, B, D, and E. Among the different viruses, hepatitis C is the most serious because it can be chronic and cause severe liver damage. During the initial infection people often have mild or no symptoms. Early on chronic infection typically has no symptoms. Over many years however, it leads to liver disease and sometimes cirrhosis.
How can Hepatitis spread?
How is Hepatitis diagnosed?
Diagnosis is done by blood testing to look for either antibodies to the virus or it’s RNA. Testing is recommended in all people who are at risk of having hepatitis C. If a woman is infected with the hepatitis C virus, then her baby usually will be tested when he or she is at least 18 months of age.
Symptoms associated with Hepatitis:
Hepatitis C affects both men and women. As a whole, the symptoms and complications of the disease are the same for both sexes. But the virus can affect women differently.
Symptoms: Acute Hepatitis –Symptoms
Many women don’t have symptoms until the disease comesis in a later stage. Women with signs of the disease in the early stage may brush off symptoms or attribute them to other factors, such as anemia, depression, or menopause.
Chronic Hepatitis slowly develops several symptoms like
Chronic and Mild Hepatitis C :
Some hepatitis C infections are acute and the infection improves on its own without treatment within a few months. Acute infections are more common in women. Hepatitis C can also be chronic, in which infection doesn’t clear on its own, but rather progresses and damages the liver. Symptoms of chronic hepatitis include: bruising or bleeding, itchy skin, fluid retention in the stomach, swollen legs, unexplained weight loss, spider veins. Women seem to be more protected against liver cirrhosis than men. Female hormone estrogen protects women from liver damage which makes them less susceptible to cirrhosis. The protective effect may diminish after menopause, when women’s bodies produce less estrogen. Out of those infected, about 85% will develop chronic Hepatitis C infection. The other 15% are lucky; their bodies get rid of the virus without medication. This phenomenon is known as spontaneous clearance. More people dying annually because of Hepatitis C rather than HIV- the virus that causes AIDS; but Hepatitis C education pales in comparison with Hepatitis C. Increased public health efforts have steadily improved Hepatitis C awareness, but most we still have a far way to go.
Prevention & Vaccination for Hepatitis C:
Talking about the treatment part then, there is no such vaccine to protect against the hepatitis C virus. Avoiding certain types of behavior is the only way to prevent infection. Hepatitis C is most common in people who were born between 1945 and 1965. Therefore, all people in this age group should be tested for hepatitis C infection. And if they are suspected then the precautionary steps must be taken. IN ACUTE CONDITION antiviral and supportive care can be given. Regular monitoring for signs of liver disease progression and treatment with antiviral medications can be given in chronic condition