Table of contents:
- Dangerous disease and its prevalence i
- How infection occurs 2
- Virus transmission myths3
- Dangers in beauty salons4
- Main symptoms5
- Treatment 6
Video: Latent Danger. Information About Hepatitis C That Will Keep You Safe
Hepatitis C is a fairly common viral infection that affects the liver. This virus is able to live outside the human body; but this requires certain conditions. Therefore, in everyday life, infection is extremely rare. Hepatitis C is usually transmitted by contact with infected blood.
The content of the article
- 1 Dangerous disease and its prevalence
- 2 How does infection occur
- 3 Myths about the transmission of the virus
- 4 Dangers in beauty salons
- 5 Main symptoms
- 6 Treatment
- 7 Prevention
Dangerous disease and its prevalence i
Usually, after infection, the virus makes itself felt with an acute outbreak. This usually happens within the first 6 months after it enters the body. In 75-85% of people, acute hepatitis C develops into chronic hepatitis C.
If left untreated, the disease can lead to serious liver damage - including liver failure. In some cases, a liver transplant is essential. In the United States, the statistics on the prevalence of hepatitis is disappointing: about 2.7-3.9 million people are carriers of the virus. In many cases, the patients themselves are not even aware of this. The virus is no less common in other countries. In Russia, for example, the number of patients in 2019 was estimated at more than 3.5 million people.
Hepatitis A and B are several other diseases, each of which is triggered by a different virus. The most common type is hepatitis A. The incubation period ranges from one week to 50 days; the onset is usually acute and flu-like. In most cases, the disease ends with recovery. Doctors usually give people with hepatitis A a special drip to help eliminate the virus's effects on the liver.
Hepatitis B is transmitted through sexual intercourse, through the use of non-sterile syringes, and from an infected mother to her baby. The disease also usually begins with a sharp increase in body temperature, nausea, and severe weakness.
How infection occurs 2
The hepatitis C virus can survive outside the human body for up to 3 weeks - but only at room temperature. The virus often remains on household surfaces. For example, sinks, drawer handles. But in almost all cases, infection occurs through contact with infected blood. Dried blood is also contagious.
Other bodily fluids - urine, sweat, semen - are not dangerous enough to transmit infection. Regular contact or even living together with a person suffering from hepatitis C is not a risk of infection.
In medical institutions, measures are always taken to prevent infection with the virus. In hospitals, clinics, dental offices, staff must constantly take care of the sterility of all surfaces and equipment.
Infection with the disease occurs in the following cases:
- When sharing the same syringe or needle.
- If contaminated blood enters the body of another person.
- Through trauma with an infected object in a medical facility.
- From mother to child during pregnancy.
Among the less common ways of infection are noted:
- Using common household items that may have come into contact with the patient's blood - for example, a razor or toothbrush.
- Sexual contact with a sick person.
The highest risk of contracting hepatitis is observed in the following categories of the population:
- People who inject drugs.
- Received donated blood or organs.
- Children whose mothers are infected with the virus.
- Health care workers who have been injured by needles or other sharp objects.
If there is a suspicion of infection, a blood test should be done as soon as possible.
Virus transmission myths3
Contrary to popular belief, hepatitis C is not transmitted in the following ways:
- sneezing or coughing;
- sharing utensils for food;
- exchange of food or drink;
- breastfeeding (if the nipples are not bleeding);
This virus is not a sexually transmitted disease, but it can be transmitted during unprotected intercourse. However, there is a slightly increased risk of infection in gay men who have sex with other men with genital ulcers or HIV.
Dangers in beauty salons4
Piercing or tattooing can be done safely - but only at a licensed facility. There is practically no risk of contracting hepatitis C if the equipment is sterilized.
To some extent, visiting beauty salons is also risky. The client can get microtrauma during the procedures. Salon owners usually claim they always sterilize their instruments. But if a person is injured with tweezers, then he can become infected. The fact is that hepatitis viruses are not killed by water or disinfectants. Anyone who visits a beauty salon or tattoo studio should make sure that the instruments in the establishment are sterilized in an autoclave. Files and pumice stones should always be disposable.
Some doctors do not recommend going to a beauty salon for people with weakened immunity - for example, after a long illness. But so far this opinion has not been proven by scientific research.
In general, beauty procedures are recommended only in proven salons.
In most of the infected, the virus does not manifest itself in any way - especially in the early stages of the disease. In later stages, some people may show the following symptoms:
- muscle or joint pain;
- violations of short-term memory;
- anxiety and depression;
- abdominal pain.
However, all of these symptoms are non-specific. Therefore, sometimes a person can be infected, but at the same time he does not seek medical help due to the absence of symptoms. Hepatitis C is often determined by chance - for example, during preparation for hospitalization. The largest number of patients with hepatitis belong to the age group from 35 to 50 years. It is important to remember all this for every adult, since over the years, the disease can lead to liver cancer or cirrhosis.
Typically, treatment includes medication and lifestyle changes. In recent years, medicine has made great strides in the treatment of hepatitis. The drugs now available are much more effective and work better. They have fewer side effects. The downside is that medications are not effective for every patient, therefore, treatment cannot be done without an individual approach.
Lifestyle changes help a person live with the disease. A healthy diet, exercise, and avoiding alcohol and cigarettes can help maintain liver health.
There is currently no vaccine for hepatitis C because the virus is highly variable. But there are vaccines against viruses of type A and B. They are recommended for those suffering from hepatitis C. This is necessary to prevent further damage to the body. Doctors and epidemiologists believe that there is no need to exclude a person with hepatitis C from the work or educational team.
Cuts and abrasions should be immediately covered with a plaster - this is one of the best preventive measures. If an infected person cuts themselves, they should dispose of any items that have blood on them.
You can not use the same syringe more than once, and even more so use the syringe with another person.
Epidemiologists recommend using only personal manicure supplies and avoiding contact with the blood of strangers. The best prevention of hepatitis is to avoid risky behavior and maintain good personal hygiene.
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