Hepatitis C (Hep C) is a viral infection of the liver. It spreads from person to person in a variety of ways, but always through blood or other bodily fluids. This means that it is possible to catch Hepatitis C from infected needles and unprotected sex. It can also be passed from mother to child during birth. It is recommended to go for a hep C check-up if you have ever injected drugs, have had multiple sex partners, received a blood donation before July 1992, have HIV, have symptoms of liver disease, or were born to a mother with hep C. Click here to find out more.
What are the Symptoms?
Symptoms of hepatitis C may not become obvious for a long time, and sometimes not at all. Because of this, most people who catch hep c have it for an extended amount of time. This can be dangerous, as the infection can damage the liver un-noticed. This is known as chronic hepatitis C. It can lead to liver cancer and cirrhosis.
Some symptoms that may occur include Jaundice (yellowing of the skin, eyes and urine), stomach pain, tiredness, and nausea. If you notice these symptoms or think you are at risk of having hepatitis C, it is important to get diagnosed quickly.
There is currently a relatively fast-acting drug called Mavyret which was fairly recently approved by the FDA for the treatment of HIV in the US in August 2017. It is also very effective. According to the drug’s website (click here to visit), Mavyret cured 98% of people in clinical trials. Treatment takes between 8 to 16 weeks depending on the stage of the infection. Typically, Mavyret is only suitable for patients who have not had hep C treatment before, and have not got extensive liver damage.
The most common side-effects of Mavyret are a headache and tiredness, although others may appear.
Mavyret contains a combination of two drugs – glecaprevir and pibrentasvir. Each of these two drugs acts in their own way. Glecaprevir is what is known as a protease inhibitor. The protease enzyme in the body is responsible for the replication of viruses. By blocking the action of this enzyme, glecaprevir stops the spread of hep C. Pibrentasvir – the other drug in Mavyret – maintains antiviral activity. Click here to find out more.
Featured image: Depositphotos / tashatuvangoPosted on October 29, 2019