2. How Serious is a Diagnosis?
While hepatitis C is treatable, or in some rare cases, goes away on its own (we’ll get into that next), it is also very serious and leads to hundreds of thousands of deaths each year. The main reason that hepatitis C is so serious is because it can create lead to complications, specifically pertaining to the liver.
In many cases people don’t realize they’ve become infected because there aren’t any symptoms, so they never seek out treatment and unknowingly allow the infection to remain in the body for decades. This unfortunately means that many people who have chronic hepatitis will also develop cirrhosis or liver cancer.
“Approximately 399,000 people die each year from hepatitis C, mostly from cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma,“ writes the World Health Organization. “Antiviral medicines can cure more than 95-percent of persons with hepatitis C infection, thereby reducing the risk of death from liver cancer and cirrhosis, but access to diagnosis and treatment is low.”