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World Health Organization. (2015) Hepatitis C factsheet. Geneva: World Health Organization.

URL: http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs164_ap...

Key facts

  • Hepatitis C is a liver disease caused by the hepatitis C virus: the virus can cause both acute and chronic hepatitis infection, ranging in severity from a mild illness lasting a few weeks to a serious, lifelong illness.
  • The hepatitis C virus is a bloodborne virus and the most common modes of infection are through unsafe injection practices; inadequate sterilization of medical equipment in some health-care settings; and unscreened blood and blood products.
  • 130–150 million people globally have chronic hepatitis C infection.
  • A significant number of those who are chronically infected will develop liver cirrhosis or liver cancer.
  • 350 000 to 500 000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver diseases.
  • Antiviral medicines can cure hepatitis C infection, but access to diagnosis and treatment is low.
  • Antiviral treatment is successful in 50–90% of persons treated, depending on the treatment used, and has also been shown to reduce the development of liver cancer and cirrhosis.
  • There is currently no vaccine for hepatitis C, however research in this area is ongoing
Item Type:FactSheet
Date:July 2015
Publisher:World Health Organization
Corporate Creators:World Health Organization
Place of Publication:Geneva
Accession Number:HRB (Other)
Subjects:G Health and disease > Disorder by cause > Communicable disease > Hepatitis C
G Health and disease > Digestive system disorder > Liver disorder > Liver cirrhosis
T Demographic characteristics > Intravenous / injecting drug user
VA Geographic area > International aspects

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