A man holds up his arm in disbelief, which is covered in bruises. A doctor leans over his shoulder to look at it.

Hepatitis C Symptoms: What Are They and What You Can Do

Recently, I was contacted about the symptoms of hepatitis C; The person asked if any of these symptoms can be treated. First, I want to share a few symptoms that one may experience with hepatitis C.  Some may have all and others may only have one or two. Keep in mind that no two people are the same as far as symptoms, but in general, these are what most common.

Common hep C symptoms

Fatigue: Feelings of being tired all the time, as though you don’t get enough sleep.
Muscle pain: A sore-type feeling in the muscles as though you have over worked them, causing a big discomfort.
Joint pain: Ankles, knees (especially), elbows, and fingers are experiencing a strong ache. Stiffness and difficulty if sitting to stand and walking up and down stairs.
Nausea: Unable to eat much with out feeling sick, or not able to keep food down if you have eaten a larger meal
Brain fog or fogginess: Feeling spaced out. Difficulty concentrating or doing simple math. A "zoned-out" feeling.
Itchy Skin: Skin displaying unstoppable itching. Dryness.
Swelling in the legs and feet: Water retention in the lower leg area
Dark-colored urine: A brownish, rust-colored urine
Bruise easily: Finding bruises on your body and have no idea where they came from. Or barely bumping yourself and creating a deep bruise.
Fluid buildup in abdomen area (ascites): A severe bloating in your stomach area
Jaundice/yellow tinting of skin: A yellow hue to your skin and whites of your eyes

Managing side effects

These symptoms again may all be present, or you may only experience a few. I recommend talking with your doctor about these, as there are ways the doctor can help minimize some of these symptoms. If the brain fog is persistent and becoming severe, it can be life threatening. It is recommended to consult your doctor immediately if the patient is feeling this type symptom.

Please note: These are examples of symptoms and by no means does everyone have all these or a few. These are just common experiences to help you understand what and why you are feeling the way you are. I strongly encourage you to get tested for hep C: The earlier the detection of the virus, the less damage it will have on your liver. Remember, hep C attacks the liver and can cause irreversible damage if treated is delayed or prolonged.

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