The first signs of infection can be dramatic. Jaundice, severe illness, bed-ridden... after a week or two you usually get better but if you do not clear the virus you will always have some sort of mild symptoms.
Those infected may complain of vague symptoms. The symptoms get worse so slowly that you don't really notice too much, usually until much much later. Even if you seem to be ok and show little or no symptoms or signs in blood test your body is always fighting a virus it cannot beat and day after day year after year... it takes its toll.
I think you will test positively in your blood for the antibodies. I do believe some people are able to resolve it without it being Chronic but that is the exception. I do think it can lay low for quite a while without symptoms. I don't know if you would call it dormant? While other times it will flare up and be more active especially when drinking alcohol are other bad things for your liver.
But I am not an expert on it. I am sure others will clarify for you.
Quite frankly I think they are still trying to figure this virus out and we are there lab rats.
I also think the TX is barbaric and many years from now they will be shocked that we poisoned our whole bodies killing all things good and bad with out isolating the virus.
Just my opinion. Obviously I am not lovin life on this TX.
Hepc never lays dormant. If you are only positive for antibodies and no active virus than you do not have the disease. Your body fought it off. However, if you are positive for hepc through HCV PCR RNA testing, you are considered chronic in most cases (unless acutely infected) If you've had it for a long time you may never have any symptoms but your liver is being attacked by the virus because that is what hepc does.
Hepc is NEVER dormant and even without drinking for drugging it is constantantly ravaging the liver. It may take years for the liver to become damaged but it will happen regardless of lifestyle. Some people's progression of liver disease happens faster than others despite a healthy lifestyle. That the nature of this disease. You never know how you will be affected.
I didn't have one symptom of hepc until right before I was diagnosed and figure I've had it over 30 years. My liver disease has reached stage 3 close to 4.
Treatment is available to eradicate the virus. Most people consider their options prior to treatment because it can be very difficult for some.
I have actually heard the term "dormant" used to describe the state of the disease, and from a doctor. I finally decided to start treatment because while the disease may never take off enough to cause major damage, why take a chance. I compare it to having a ticking time bomb inside my body. I figure I contracted it between 1980 and 1988. My VL pre-TX was 662,000 and my liver biopsy showed grade 1, stage 1 little to no damage. My last PCR prior to starting treatment was in 2007, and was 539,000. A little growth but still well under a million. I have also had a doctor tell me it doesn't "flare up". I tend to disagree with that. I got diagnosed after relapsing on alcohol after 13 yrs. clean and sober. I had Hepatitis B in 1985 and I was feeling like I had it again. I went to the doctor and had her run the test as I knew I was in a risky category. Sure enough, it came back positive, so I can attest to the fact that alcohol is absolutely something to avoid at all costs if you have Hep C. It is a slow acting disease, and if you are like me with little to no damage, you don't have to decide immediately whether to treat or not. I chose to wait in the hope of better drugs. Of course being that I am on a study, I ended up with the Peg/Riba only arm, and should anemia, excessive weight loss or some other health condition cause the doctor to pull me off treatment, I am on a 48 week course. Not happy about that, but am finding the sides are not as horrible as I feared. I'm by no means a happy camper right now, but not so bad as it could be. And to answer your question, it can show up in your blood if you are asymptomatic, and by "it" I mean actual virus, not antibodies. Antibodies without the presence of live virus means you are one of the lucky folks who clear the virus on their own, and you don't have the disease. Live virus means you have the disease. I would try to find out as much as you can about the disease. The Center for Disease Control has some good articles, written in easy language to understand, and there are several good books out there. Good luck to you.
There is so much misinformation on HCV out there, and some of it is perpetuated by the medical community themselves.
HCV is never dormant.
It can be chronic (ongoing) or acute (recently 'infected').
Some people progress faster than others and are more symptomatic. Others progress slowly and have no symptoms that they have HCV.
Anyone who has HCV has quantifiable virus. No virus=no HCV. In that case it isn't dormant, it just isn't there. The antibodies do not tell you whether the virus is there or not. There are separate tests to establish that.
Quote from annieCinMD:
I have actually heard the term "dormant" used to describe the state of the disease, and from a doctor.
If you are HCV pcr RNA positive , you got it. hCv is never dormant.
My understanding is hBv can be dormant... somewhat, sometimes.
I can understand a DR telling you that your HCV was progressing very slowly and you had little or no liver damage. But not that your HCV was dormant.
I hopefully 'Had' hcv for 38 years. Never thought I was sick till dx last spring, never had felt sick during that time, but ended up with somewhere around stage2 fibrosis before tx last summer.
I'm just saying what I heard...and I know I got it. I think what he meant was, as you said, progressing very slowly. That was from my primary, and he admitted, as most of them (primary care docs) do, that he doesn't really know that much about the disease, and referred me to the GI doc, who is treating me now.
Trinity said it well. There is no such thing as "dormant" HCV. You either have it or you don't. If you have it, it's either "acute" or "chronic". Almost all reported cases are chronic because the acute period is only six months from infection and most people don't have symptons and therefore don't know they have it.
A little off the topic, I read your profile, specficially:
"... i know how and when and it was threw sex. now im affraid to ever do that again or even kiss anyone ... "
Im very sorry you think you got Hep C from your boyfriend through sex. While this may be possible, it's fairly uncommon (some think impossible) unless the sex was unprotected rough sex or anal.
So, given the very low odds, that leaves the possiblity that you had Hep C before you met your boyfriend but just wasnt aware of it. Had you ever been tested prior to having sex with your boyfriend? If not, how can you be sure he gave it to you. Do you know your boyfriend's genotype (type)? Do you know yours? Are they the same?
But that aside, even if he did give you HCV through sex, that doesn't not mean you should relegate yourself to being a social/sexual pariah. Again, it's very uncommon -- if at all -- through normal and non-anal sex. And that's without protection. If your partner wears protection then I think you can assume the sex is 100% safe. As to kissing, you cannot transmit Hep C that way.
You should also know that in an unlikely sexual scenario, male to female transmission would be much more efficient than female to male. So, again, your concern is admirable but really groundless, and you should feel free to go out and lead a normal sex life like most here do. If you want to be extra precautious, just make sure your partner uses a condom. And, of course, do not share personal items like razors, nail clippers, etc.
Annie: I have actually heard the term "dormant" used to describe the state of the disease, and from a doctor.
I have no doubt you have and there are only two possiblities: (1) the doctor is "dumbing down" his speech to try and explain a medical concept to a lay person. I suppose in this case they are using the term "dormant" to be synonymous with "chronic" although it's really a bad comparison. Or, (2) the doctor really doesn't understand HCV very well which is VERY common among family practitioners and internists. My internist, for example, was surprised I gave myself the interferon injections!
thank you for your answers. i dont have a doctor, no insurance, when i was first diagnosed i had medicade, but before i could get my liver byopsy the medicade ran out. so i have not been to a doctor since. the info i get on this is on the internet only. as for my boyfriend yes i was tested regularly. i was an advid donor of plasma for 10 months tested twice a week for any and all. and then one day i tested positive for hep c. i went to a specialist and she said i had gyno type 1a. it was so fast. i donated twice a week for 1o months and was clean, then went the next week after being with my boyfriend and was possitive for hep c. so could it be more contagious threw sex than anyone knows?
Yours is a very unusual story about being clear of HCV then suddenly testing positive. I am a little confused and wonder if something was deleted from this thread because I don't see a post from you about your boyfriend's status, etc. As jmjm530 said, the chances of transmission through normal sexual practices are very slight. It's more likely you would have contracted the virus by sharing a razor or something.
Do you have a copy of the test the specialist gave you when she told you your genotype? If so, perhaps you could start a new thread and people here could help sort things out. There are such things as false positives (with some tests and not others) and I wouldn't exclude that possibility.
I'm also wondering why you were scheduled for a liver biopsy. If you contracted HCV very, very recently, it wouldn't make any sense to do a liver biopsy. Rather, you'd be treated as someone in the acute phase.
Can others on the board try to sort this out?
I know how frustrating this must all be for you, especially without health insurance. This board is a good source of info. Good luck!
im not real sure of the why. i just know what they told me.i was going to a pcp in clyde tx. after the plasma clinic told me i was positive. the pcp tested me every month for 3 or 4 months and i kept getting different results. one time i would have it the next i wouldnt. so i moved to granbury tx. and went to another pcp and he tested me and yes it was positive. so he sent me to a liver specialist in fort worth. she tested me and told me my gyno and scheduled my byopsy. that i didnt get to do. so here i am. im not showing any signs of it yet, that i know of.as for the boyfriend hes in prison. dont know anything else about him. hes no longer in my life.
You might want to get your own copy of the tests and see what they tested you for. It's possible the different PCPs used different kinds of tests. You will test positive for antibodies for life but that doesn't mean you have hep c. The important test is called a "PCR" or viral load. If you test positive here, then you have it. The other thing is that unless you know how to interpret the results, a PCP is not the person to see because they often don't know what the correct test is to order or how to interpret. See a Gastro or liver specialist (hepatologist).
I went to the dr. and he told me I tested positive for Hep C. I was tested again. and again. Both came positive. I was sent to the liver dr. he checked my liver and he told me that my liver was fatty. He asked me if i drank and I told him yes. I used to drink 2 cases a day and gallons of liquior on the weekend. Not proud of it but most people would be dead by the way I drink. I used to beer bong liquor mixed with alcohol. I could drink a pint of everclear in 10 minutes and that would just be the start. I asked the dr what does it mean when i tested positive for the Hep c but all three times the viral load came back negative in a test that was run 6 months apart. For one Do i need to tell any new gf i have or do I really have it. I would hate to tell my new gf if I do not have it at all. Dr. said I did not. but My main question is do I need to keep this to myself if i find someone?
Hey dolphins fan. This is an old thread. About 20% of people that contract hep c will clear the virus through their own immune system. They will forever show the antibodies but if you have tested repeatedly with no viral load then you do not have it. Always best to talk to your doctor though.
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