What is Hepatitis C?
Hepatitis C is a disease caused by a virus that infects the liver. In time, it can lead to cirrhosis, liver cancer and liver failure. Hepatitis is a liver disease that ranges in severity from a mild illness lasting a few weeks to a serious, lifelong illness that attacks the liver. It results from infection with the Hepatitis C virus (HCV), which is spread primarily through contact with the blood of an infected person. It is difficult for the human immune system to eliminate Hepatitis C from the body, and infection with Hepatitis C usually becomes chronic. Over decades, chronic infection with Hepatitis C damages the liver and can cause liver failure. When the virus first enters the body there usually are no symptoms.