Hepatitis C Prognosis

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Hepatitis C Prognosis

As with HBV, those infected with HCV can either exhibit one of three disease states; be asymptomatic, have acute illness, or present with chronic infection.
According to the CDC, 15% to 25% of those infected with HCV clear the virus without treatment. It is possible therefore to have sero-positive patients who have no virus (i.e. they resolved their HCV infection and are now aviremic but sero-positive). Around 20-30% of those newly infected with HCV will develop acute illness. This can occur from 2 to 26 weeks of infection. In addition, 75-85% of those infected will develop chronic HCV. This is a higher rate of chronic infection than seen with HBV.
With HCV, the patient can undergo severe stages of the disease. The CDC states that 10-20% of those infected with HCV will go on to develop cirrhosis of the liver. Those developing cirrhosis have an annual risk of hepatocellular carcinoma and hepatic decompensation. About 1/5 patients with hepatic decompensation will die as a result.