How Does Hepatitis C Affect Your Liver?
In most cases, you won't have symptoms of hepatitis C until your liver becomes really damaged. That can take a long time -- years or even decades.
If you have the disease for many years and don't get treatment, you may get cirrhosis. This is a condition that inflames and scars the liver.
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Could I Get Hepatitis C?
More than 3 million Americans have a long-term infection from the hepatitis C virus (HCV). Anyone who has this disease can give it to someone else through blood and other bodily fluids.
Once you've learned what situations make you likely to catch it, though, you can take steps to protect yourself or get diagnosed and treated.
Read the Could I Get Hepatitis C? article > >
Symptoms of Cirrhosis
In cirrhosis, scar tissue replaces healthy liver tissue. If this continues unchecked, scarring blocks blood flow through the organ. That makes it hard for it to do its many jobs:
Remove harmful toxins from your blood
Digest food and process nutrients, hormones, and drugs
Make proteins to control blood clotting
When this happens, you may have symptoms such as:
Fatigue or weakness
Nausea or vomiting
Loss of appetite or weight loss
When Cirrhosis Gets Worse