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Hepatitis C: Your Risk for Cirrhosis

Overview

Many people who are infected with the hepatitis C virus will develop long-term (chronic) infection. Some people who have chronic hepatitis C will go on to develop cirrhosis—severe liver damage and scarring—after a period of about 20 years or more.

Certain factors may affect how quickly problems such as cirrhosis or liver cancer develop.

The way cirrhosis develops depends on:

  • How much liver damage you had when you were diagnosed.
  • How long you've had the infection.
  • Your age when you were infected.
  • How much alcohol you drink.
  • Your gender.
  • If you are obese and/or have diabetes.
  • If you have HIV or another immune system disorder.

Related Information

Credits

Current as of: September 8, 2021

Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:
E. Gregory Thompson MD - Internal Medicine
Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine
W. Thomas London MD - Hepatology