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Avatar universal

I tested positive for hep c antibodies and retested with no infection.

I’m sure this question has been asked before, but I can’t find the answer.

Did my immune system fight it off and I’m ok? Or do I need to worry about a reinfection later?
3 Responses
Avatar universal
I do see that 25% have their immune system fight the infection.

Does this mean I’m a carrier? Can I transmit? Can I be reinfected with a different strain?
683231 tn?1467323017
As you commented about 25% of the population are able to successfully beat the virus in their own and will test negative for the actual virus on the HCV RNA by PCR test.

This means you do not have the virus circulating in your blood you do not have hep c.

Antibodies are made by your own body hen it fights a virus. So for example you ever had the measles (or were vaccinated) you have measles antibodies that protect you from getting the measles. Antibodies are not an invader they were made by the body they are a part of you. Most likely you will test positive for Hepatitis c antibodies. But this is again not the virus so you cannot transmit an illness you do not have. You are not a “carrier” you do not have hep c.

As to reinfection unfortunately hep c antibodies are not like those for the measles they provide no protection from infection because of how the hep c virus works. So yes if you are exposed to Hepatitis c you could become infected.

Not sure what you mean by strain if you are thinking about Hepatitis a or Hepatitis b those are 2 entirely different viruses. If concerened about contracting either hep a or b there are vaccines available to protect against those infections.

Hep c does have different “strains” called genotypes with names like 1a, 1b, 2a, 2b etc I think there are like 16 different genotypes in all. People are on occasion infected with more than one genotype at the same time.

So in summary, you cannot give hep c to anyone you are not contagious because you do not have hep c only antibodies made by your body. You will always test positive for antibodies. Hep c antibodies do not protect against future hep c infection. Hep a and hep b are different. There is no vaccination for hep c but there is for hep a and hep b. Hep c has many different genotypes but they are all called Hepatitis c.
683231 tn?1467323017
I am assuming you initially tested for hep c antibodies and later retested per standard protocol for the actual hep c virus with a HCV RNA by PCR test.

Hopefully, you did not simply repeat a hep c antibody test as that would be without any value. When using an accurate test once you test positive for hep c antibodies you will always test positive unless there was a lab error.

If you did retest for antibodies and got conflicting results you should have the HCV RNA test to clearly determine if you do or do not have an active hep c infection.

What tests have you had done? Are you doing this with a doctor or are you using some kind of at home testing kit? I am not familiar with the accuracy of home kits or really if there are home testing kits available for hep c so just guessing.
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