Factors That May Predict Severe Liver Damage From Hepatitis C
Up to 85% of people who are infected with the
hepatitis C virus will develop long-term (chronic)
infection.1 About 25% of people who have chronic
hepatitis C will go on to develop
cirrhosis-severe liver damage and scarring-after a
period of about 20 years or more.2
Many types of hepatitis can be prevented by making informed lifestyle choices. Vaccinations are available for hepatitis A and B. Adequate sanitation and clean personal habits will help reduce the spread of hepatitis A and hepatitis E. In areas where sanitation is questionable, boil water. Cook all food well and peel all fruit.
Health care workers or caregivers involved in the treatment of patients with contagious forms of hepatitis should wash their hands, utensils, bedding, and clothing with soap...
How much liver damage you had when you were
diagnosed and how long you have had the infection. The amount of liver damage
you have compared with how long you have had hepatitis C can help determine how
likely it is that you will develop cirrhosis.
Your age when you
were infected. People who are older than 40 when they become infected may
develop cirrhosis more quickly.
How much alcohol you drink. People
who drink too much alcohol (heavy drinking) can develop cirrhosis
much more quickly than people with who do not drink or who drink very little
Your gender. Men may develop cirrhosis more quickly than
Whether you are
obese and/or have
diabetes. These conditions can contribute to the
development of cirrhosis.
Whether you have
HIV or another
immune system disorder. These conditions can speed up
the development of cirrhosis.
Dienstag JL (2010). Chronic viral hepatitis. In GL
Mandell et al., eds., Mandell, Douglas, and Bennett's Principles and Practice of Infectious Diseases, 7th ed., vol. 1, pp.
1593-1670. Philadelphia: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier.