Hepatitis C virus (HCV or Hep C) is a blood-borne infection and an RNA virus that uses liver cells to replicate itself. Overtime, Hep C can cause serious damage to the liver through a process called fibrosis (scarring of the liver) and eventually cirrhosis (the later stage of scarring).
The most common route of transmission for Hep C is through the sharing of drug use equipment. This is why it is important to use a new needle every time a person injects. Sterile needles can be obtained at any of our three offices as well as at Ensemble Greater Moncton and Avenue B Saint John.
Hepatitis C cannot be passed through kissing, hugging, or sharing utensils. Hepatitis C is also not commonly transmitted through sex but there are certain factors that increase the likelihood of this.
Hepatitis C is treatable through a course of oral medication and is important to prevent further liver damage. To access testing and/or treatment for Hepatitis C, contact your doctor or nearest sexual health centre.
What is Hepatitis C and Why Should You Care? (Johns Hopkins Medicine)