What are the Complications of Hepatitis C?
Like many STDs, hepatitis C does not always produce noticeable symptoms. About 80% of those infected do not experience symptoms and many do not realize they have the virus until hepatitis C complications are detected during routine blood tests later in life. A hepatitis C test is recommended for high-risk people such as those who may have come in contact with contaminated blood or intravenous drug users.
There are two types of hepatitis C infections: acute and chronic. With an acute hepatitis C infection, a person will have the virus for a brief period but then get better. However, most people develop chronic, long-term infections. Chronic hepatitis C complications can be serious.
Hepatitis C can be a very serious, but it is a manageable illness. Treatment for hepatitis C allows those who are infected to lead long, healthy lives. However, this disease can cause complications.
Potential hepatitis C complications:
- Cirrhosis: Inflammation caused by hepatitis C can result in severe scarring on the liver, or cirrhosis. This can affect the liver’s ability to function properly.
- Liver cancer: Those with hepatitis C are more likely to develop liver cancer.
- Liver failure: Acute liver failure occurs when the vital liver functions shut down. A liver transplant is necessary to maintain life.