Alternate Names : Non-A, Non-B Hepatitis
What are the treatments for the disease?
Because many people with acute hepatitis C have no symptoms, it is not always
possible to treat the disease in its early stages. For those individuals with
symptoms, treatment may include the following:
drinking extra fluids to prevent
avoiding unnecessary medications
eating a well balanced diet for liver
taking antinausea medications as needed
The antiviral medication alpha interferon is often used to treat hepatitis C.
Ribaviran can also be used, but can be difficult to use in combination with
interferon. A person who has severe
cirrhosis or liver cancer may
be a candidate for a
What are the side effects of the treatments?
Side effects will depend on the treatments used. Side effects of
interferon include a flu-like illness, with
fever and body aches. The combination of alpha interferon and
has aggravated hepatitis in some people.
A liver transplant
can cause many
problems, including failure or rejection of the new liver. After a liver
transplant, a person will need to take powerful antirejection medications for
the rest of his or her life. Side effects of these medications increase the
person's risk for infections, certain
cancers, and other problems.
What happens after treatment for the disease?
During and after treatment, individuals with hepatitis C are monitored for their
response to the therapy. Sometimes treatment must be discontinued because of side effects,
even though the treatment has been effective. After treatment, individuals can have a reactivation of the virus, which can lead to a need for
more treatment. After a liver transplant, the vast
majority of people become reinfected with hepatitis C.
How is the disease monitored?
Periodic visits to the healthcare provider and liver function tests will be used to monitor the
hepatitis and to
see how the liver is working. The status of the liver may require repeated
biopsies. Decisions for further
treatment or liver
frequently made based on these tests. Any new or worsening symptoms should be
reported to the healthcare provider.