Hepatitis C is an infection caused by a virus that attacks the liver and leads to inflammation. According to WHO, an estimated 71 million people have chronic hepatitis C infection, globally.
This World Hepatitis Day, let’s clear out all the myths and know the real facts about Hep C!
- Myth – You know if you have Hep C
Fact – You can have Hep C and not know about it
Since there are hardly any early signs of Hep C, people who have this infection might not know that they have it. People usually discover it when they have severe illness like liver disease and kidney problems.
- Myth – There’s a vaccine for Hepatitis C
Fact – There’s NO vaccine for Hepatitis C
People assume that there is a vaccine for Hepatitis C, but in reality, there isn’t one developed as of now. Though, there are vaccines for Hepatitis A and B, but not for Hep C.
If you or someone you know has Hep C, getting tested and vaccinated for Hep A and B is recommended by experts, as Hep A and B along with Hep C can increase your chances of getting sick.
- Myth – Hepatitis is an STD
Fact – It is not a sexually transmitted disease
If you are in contact with an infected person’s blood, then you can get the virus. In very rare case, Hepatitis C is spread through sexual contact. It’s not an STD, and doesn’t spread through fluids like semen and saliva. The virus in these fluids is found in very small amounts, the main reason is blood to blood contact with the infected person.
- Myth – Hep C is a death sentence
Fact – Hep C is NOT a death sentence
According to HCVAdvocate.org, 90% of people living with chronic Hep C would have long and productive lives. Only a small percentage would develop some serious liver disease. To manage the virus, it is imperative to go to your doctor for the regular monitoring.
Don’t jump to conclusions when it comes to Hepatitis C! Know all the facts and keep everyone around informed!