Menstuff® has compiled the following information on Hep
C without Symptoms.
Hepatitis C Without Symptoms?
Hepatitis C is an infection caused by the hepatitis C virus (HCV). Once inside the body, HCV travels through the blood and attacks the liver. A healthy liver is essential to your well-being. You liver is able to:
Early diagnosis and treatment are essential to protecting your liver. A liver that has been damaged by HCV doesn't function properly. Symptoms associated with HCV infection include:
If you don't have symptoms, it doesn't mean you don't have hepatitis C. Up to 80% of those with hepatitis C have no signs or symptoms.
HCV may be attacking your liver and causing damage, without your knowing it. That's what makes early testing, diagnosis and considering treatment extremely important. If you think you may have hepatitis C, talk to your healthcare provider today.
How Do People Contract Hepatitis C?
You may be wondering, how did I get hepatitis C? While it's known that HCV infection occurs through direct blood-to-blood contact, about 30% of people with chronic hepatitis don't know how they were infected.
Examples of blood-to-blood contact that may result in hepatitis C infection include:
Any incident that puts you in direct contact with infected blood, even if the amount of blood is too small to see (such as with a shared toothbrush) may put you at risk for contracting hepatitis C.
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What is PEGASYS?
PEGASYS is a medicine used to treat some adults who have hepatitis C or hepatitis B and signs of liver damage. PEGASYS works to reduce the amount of virus in your blood, helping your body fight the virus.
PEGASYS (Peginterferon alfa-2a), like other alpha interferons, can cause fatal or make life-threatening problems worse (like mental, immune system, heart, liver, lung, intestinal and infections). Your doctor should monitor you during regular visits. If you show signs or symptoms of these conditions, your doctor may stop your medication. In most patients, these conditions get better after you stop taking PEGASYS (see medication guide for more information and warnings).
What is COPEGUS?
COPEGUS is a medicine that works by slowing down the growth of the virus. COPEGUS should be taken with PEGASYS to fight the virus. Do not take COPEGUS by itself.
COPEGUS (Ribavirin, USP) can be extremely harmful and cause birth defects in an unborn baby. Female patients and the female partners of male patients should avoid getting pregnant. Ribavirin is known to cause anemia (low red blood cells), which can make heart disease worse. Also, ribavirin can harm your DNA and possibly cause cancer (see medication guide for more information and warnings).
Who should not take PEGASYS and COPEGUS?
Do not take PEGASYS alone or with COPEGUS if:
What if I am pregnant or thinking about having a baby?
If you are a woman who could get pregnant, you must take pregnancy tests before, during and for 6 months after treatment ends to make sure you are not pregnant.
During treatment and for 6 months after treatment, female and male patients must:
What medication should I avoid when I am taking PEGASYS and COPEGUS?
You should not take didanosine with COPEGUS. Talk to your doctor about all medications that you are taking.
What are the possible side effects?
The most common side effects of PEGASYS and COPEGUS are:
The most serious side effects of PEGASYS and COPEGUS are:
Tell your doctor immediately if you think you or your partner may
be pregnant or if any of these symptoms occur.