The CDC recommends the following persons be tested for HCV infection:
♦ Adults born during 1945 through 1965 (no prior ascertainment of HCV risk
♦ Anyone who currently injects drugs or who has ever injected drugs, even once
or many years ago
♦ Anyone who has the following medical conditions, including:
◊ received clotting factor concentrates produced before 1987
◊ was ever on long-term hemodialysis
◊ persistently abnormal ALT
◊ HIV infection
♦ Anyone who has received a transfusion of blood, blood components, or an
organ transplant before July 1992
♦ Healthcare, emergency medical, and public safety workers after needlesticks,
sharps, or mucosal exposures to HCV-positive blood
♦ Children born to HCV-positive women
Testing should be initiated with anti-HCV. A reactive result should be followed
by a nucleic acid test (NAT) for HCV ribonucleic acid (RNA).
The tool below can be used to help identify patients who should be tested for HCV.
Hepatitis C Overview
♦ Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is the most common chronic blood-borne
infection in the United States; approximately 3 million people in the U.S. are
living with chronic hepatitis C.
♦ Chronic HCV infection develops in 75%–85% of HCV-infected persons; about
15%–25% of people will clear the virus from their bodies without treatment.
♦ The majority of infected persons might not be aware of their infection because
they are not clinically ill. However, infected persons serve as a source of
transmission to others and are at risk for chronic liver disease or other HCVrelated
chronic diseases decades after infection.
♦ Over time, approximately 60%-70% of people with chronic hepatitis C develop
liver disease and 1%-5% will get liver cancer and die.
♦ HCV is most efficiently transmitted through large or repeated percutaneous
exposure to infected blood (e.g., through injecting drugs). Although much less
frequent, occupational, perinatal, and sexual exposures can also result in
transmission of HCV.
♦ Before improved screening of the blood supply began in 1992, hepatitis C was
also spread through blood transfusions and organ transplants.
♦ There is no vaccine available for hepatitis C.
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