5 Other Reasons to Get Cured

Many people with the hepatitis C virus (HCV or "hep C") think that the main reason to get cured is to clear the virus. While this is true, there are other benefits as well. We conducted our 4th Hepatitis C In America Survey to get a better idea of life with hep C. Through this survey, we were able to learn more about ways life can change after treatment:

Increased energy levels

When we asked people with HCV (not yet cured) about what symptoms they had experienced in the last month, 80 percent said fatigue. But when we asked those who had been cured what their symptoms were, only 54 percent said fatigue. In addition, 65 percent of respondents not yet cured said they regularly feel like they have a lack of energy. This number dropped to 20 percent for those who had been cured.

In other words, curing your hep C may give you more energy. This is called reaching SVR or sustained virological response.

Decreased muscle and joint pain

Another common symptom reported by people who were not yet cured was muscle aches and joint pain. Over 60 percent of respondents with HCV said they had experienced this kind of pain in the last month. By contrast, only 43 percent of cured respondents had.

That is, people whose HCV had been cured experienced significantly less muscle or joint pain. So curing your hep C may reduce muscle or joint pain for you as well.

Reduced depression and anxiety

There was almost a 25 percent decrease in depression and anxiety between respondents whose HCV had not yet been cured versus and those who had been cured. People who had not treated their HCV yet felt sad, nervous, or like they were losing hope more often than those who had treated their hep C. Curing your hep C may help improve your mental health.

Better control of other symptoms

Survey respondents also reported other symptoms that improved after getting treated. Overall, those who had been cured had higher physical well-being scores than those who hadn’t treated their HCV. Some of the additional symptoms that improved after treatment included:

Increased emotional and social well-being

Just like physical well-being, emotional and social well-being were higher for those who had been cured when compared to those who still had HCV. Compared to respondents who had not yet been cured, those who had been cured said they:

  • Had higher self-esteem
  • Felt less embarrassment
  • Felt better support and communication from their families

Need help getting treatment?

Everyone’s experience with hepatitis C treatment can be different. But treatment can have many benefits. If you have hep C and are having a hard time treating it due to concerns like cost or insurance coverage, contact your doctor for help. They may be able to address your concerns or recommend financial assistance programs to help with treatment.

The 2018 Hepatitis In America Survey was conducted online from April through July 2018. The survey was completed by 539 people.

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