Living With HepC

Have you been recently diagnosed?

If you have been recently diagnosed with hepatitis C you may feel vulnerable and unsure what this means for you. The first thing to do is get the right information and support. Below are some of the key things to consider when you are first diagnosed.

What is Hepatitis C and how does it affect my health?

Hepatitis C is a blood borne virus that affects the liver.  Over time the liver can become scarred and if left untreated may lead to cirrhosis and possibly liver failure.  You can be living with hepatitis C and not show any signs or symptoms even when your liver is becoming unwell.  This is why it is important to stay connected with your GP or Hepatology unit to monitor the health of your liver. For more information please see:  HepC Information

How is it transmitted and how do I keep from passing it on?

Hepatitis C is a blood borne virus - this means that it can only be transmitted when a person’s blood comes into contact with blood that is infected with hepatitis C.  When living with Hepatitis C it is important to know how to keep from transmitting the virus.  Transmission of hepatitis C is preventable if an infected person uses their own personal grooming kit (i.e. toothbrush, razors, nail clippers, etc…). For more information please see: How to keep from passing it on

Will Hepatitis C go away or is there any treatment for it?

Yes, there is treatment.  Hepatitis C is a chronic illness which means that it will not go away without treatment.  Effective treatment does exist and is able to cure in most cases.  About 4 out of every 5 people clear the hepatitis C virus and it never becomes chronic.  For more information please see: Treatment

How affect my health

Many people do not have any signs or symptoms of hepatitis C, however if you do they could include: tiredness/fatigue, Nausea, loss of appetite, fever, Jaundice (yellowing of the skin and eyes).  These signs and symptoms can also be associated with other illness or infections.  If you are all concerned about your health you should go to your GP.  For more information please see:  What are the signs and symptoms?

Supports available – GP, Helpline

It is natural to be worried when being recently diagnosed.  There are supports that can answer your questions and listen to your concerns.  The Health Service Executive Helpline – 1 800 459 459 is one such place.  You can either phone or email – helpline@hse.ie.  This is a confidential service which provides information and guidance. They can also make referrals to specific services to be meet your needs. For more information please see:  Supports 

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