Overview, Is it infectious or a non-infectious disease? – Page 3 Is the Disease/Disorder an infectious or non-infectious disease? , What is the Known prevention or possible cures from this disease/disorder- Page 4 What part of your body/organ/system is affected by the disease? – Page 5 Is the disease widespread in Australia? , What are organisations, groups or government agencies doing to inform the Australian society to help with prevention of the disease? – Page 6 Hepatitis C Timeline – Page 7 Bibliography – Page 8 Overview of Hepatitis C Hepatitis C is a blood-borne virus that causes inflammation of the liver.
It is most commonly spread through sharing unsterile needles, syringes and other injecting drug equipment with another person, but can also be spread with blood contact. There is currently no vaccine to help prevent hepatitis C infection, but treatment is effective for some people. When the infection lasts for more than six months, it is then called chronic hepatitis C.
Chronic hepatitis C can lead to cirrhosis and liver cancer. Is the disease/disorder an infectious or non-infectious disease? The hepatitis C virus is a blood borne infectious virus. The most common ways of attaining the infection is by sharing drug injecting equipment, insufficient decontamination of medical supplies and equipment. Hepatitis C is infectious because infected microorganisms travel through blood. If you are sharing a used needle, if there is any blood on the needle the infected organism is on the needle too.
Since the Hepatitis C virus is a blood borne virus, it means that the virus travels through blood. Any Blood to blood contact and there is a substantial risk of being infected by the Hepatitis C virus. When you are sharing drug injecting equipment the virus travels from the infected person’s blood, to the needle, and then back to your blood.
Then the virus starts to attack the liver’s cells and then it prompts the reaction from your body’s immune system. Is the Disease/Disorder an infectious or non-infectious disease?
The Hepatitis C virus is not contagious because you cannot contract the infection by physical contact. Contagious means the disease is capable of being transmitted by bodily physical contact with an infected person or object. You cannot contract the Hepatitis C from physical contact so the Hepatitis C is not a contagious disease! What is the Known prevention or possible cures from this disease/disorder Prevention programs have been put in to place to avoid needle sharing among drug addicts. Needle exchange awareness programs have reduced transmission of Hepatitis C infection.
Although, the rates of drug addicts/users that are getting infected by Hepatitis C still remain high. Just over 30 percent of drug addicts that are infected with Hepatitis C are under 30 years of age. Safer needle-usage techniques have been developed to significantly decrease the rate of accidental needle-sticks. Needle stick injuries are wounds caused by needles that unintentionally prick the skin. Needle stick injuries are a hazard for people who work with hypodermic syringes and other needle equipment.
These injuries can occur at any time when people use, disassemble, or dispose of needles. Newer syringes have a system where needles self-cap and that avoids the need to manually replace a cap after drawing blood and significantly reduces the rate of accidental needle sticks. More ways to prevent the Hepatitis C infections are, people that are engaging in sexual intercourse with multiple partners should use contraception such as condoms to minimize the risk of Hepatitis C and Many other STI’s (sexually-transmitted infections).
If a person you are sexually active with is infected with Hepatitis C either use a condom or stop having sexual intercourse with this person. Some couples may decide to use them and some may not due to religious and personal reasons. People with Hepatitis C infection should not share razors or toothbrushes with other people. It is essential to know that Hepatitis C is not spread by casual contact such as shaking hands, kissing, and hugging people. What part of your body/organ/system is affected by the disease? Hepatitis C most commonly affects the liver but it also can cause skin conditions.
People with chronic hepatitis C might begin to show inflammation of the liver caused by the body’s immune system reacting to the infection. Blood tests can show increased levels of liver enzymes and signs of liver damage. Liver damage is often the first symptom that shows you might have Hepatitis C. Cirrhosis may begin to develop. Cirrhosis is a disease of the liver caused by deterioration degeneration of cells, inflammation of the tissue of the liver. Symptoms of Cirrhosis can show; weakness, Loss of appetite, weight loss, breast enlargement in men and a rash on the palm. After cirrhosis begins to develop the liver begins to fail and this is a life- threatening situation.
Hepatitis C can cause the body to produce irregular antibodies called ‘cryoglobulins’. These cryoglobulins cause inflammation of the arteries (vasculitis) which could damage the skin, joints, and kidneys. Patients with cryoglobulinemia (cryoglobulins in the blood) may have joint pain, arthritis, a raised purple rash on the legs, widespread pain or swelling. Two skin conditions, lichen planus and porphyria cutanea tarda, have been related with Hepatitis C. Is the disease widespread in Australia? In 2010, there were roughly 224,000 people predict to be living with Hepatitis C in Australia About 9700 new Hepatitis C infections befall yearly.
About 95% these new infections befall through blood-to-blood contact between people sharing drug injecting equipment. Around 7 per cent of infections happen among immigrants to Australia (The infection originated from their own country). Around 4 per cent happen due blood-to-blood contact for example, unsterile tattooing and body piercing. Still a substantial number of people so far to be diagnosed and are oblivious to their condition. What are organisations, groups or government agencies doing to inform the Australian society to help with prevention of the disease?
The Australian government has made multiple programs to address the Australian people about blood-borne viruses and sexually transmissible infections.. Scientific research advances in knowledge of prevention of the virus providing Australia with the knowledge significantly reduce the percentage of infections. However, the condition still has a very high rate of people infected. Australia’s five national strategies have help raise awareness for HIV, hepatitis B, hepatitis C, sexually transmissible infections. With these programs in place by the Australian government, it has rapidly reduced the percentage of Australians infected from the Hepatitis C.
In an interview of CDC, they quoted “Together as Australians we need to take action to overcome the barriers that impede our efforts to scale up prevention, testing, management, care and support for people living with and at risk of blood-borne viruses and sexually transmissible infections”.
The Australian government have taken big action to raise awareness for the Hepatitis C virus in Australia. Bibliography /References: • Hepatitis C Information for the Public, (12 Nov 2013) Centres for Disease Control and Prevention http://www. cdc. gov/hepatitis/c/cfaq. htm , accessed 22/04/2015 • Picco, M. D. , Michael F, (10 December 2011), Hepatitis C: How common is sexual transmission. U.
S Publication. • Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research (13 August 2013) http://www. mayoclinic. com/health/hepatitis- c/DS00097/DSECTION=treatments-and-drugs. Accessed 22/04/2015 • U. S.
Preventive Services Task Force , (June 2013), Screening for Hepatitis C Virus Infection in Adults. http://www. uspreventiveservicestaskforce. org/uspstf/uspshepc. htm , accessed 22/04/2015 • Centre for disease control and prevention, (November 18, 2009), Hepatitis C:25 Years Since Discovery, http://www. cdc. gov/hepatitis/c/cfaq. htm Hepatits C Australia, (15 July 2014), About Hep C, http://www. hepatitisaustralia. com/about-hep-c/.