The spotlight has been on hepatitis C recently with the latest advancements in treatment options. Here are a few facts that you might not know about Hepatitis C.
- Hepatitis C is a viral disease that can cause long-standing liver disease, cirrhosis and liver cancer.
- Hepatitis C can be sexually transmitted but is more likely to be spread through the blood (i.e. blood transfusions, sharing needles, syringes or other equipment to inject drugs).
- Baby boomers (those born between 1945 and 1965) are more likely to have hep C than adults in other age groups.
- Hep C is often a silent infection with most people unaware that they have it.
- According to the CDC, more people than ever died from hepatitis C in 2014.
- 75% of people that have hep C, have not yet been diagnosed.
- Screening for hep C is a simple blood test that can be requested from your general practitioner, and some labs even allow walk-ins for this screening.
- Treatment options achieve very high cure rates (more than 90%) and are easily tolerated by patients.
Speak with your primary care physician about getting screened for hepatitis C. Visit ochsner.org for more information.