Hepatitis C is a contagious liver disease caused by the hepatitis C virus (HCV). Here is more information about the link between sex and transmission of hepatitis.
Hepatitis can be transmitted through sexual intercourse
The main intermediary for transmission of hepatitis C from one person to another is through blood and sexual fluids, such as semen or vaginal fluids from unsafe sexual activity. Sexual transmission of hepatitis C occurs in 1 of every 190,000 cases of sexual contact.
Several other hepatitis C transmission pathways, including:
- Share non-sterile needles among injecting drug users, such as those who abuse heroin
- From mother to baby at delivery
- Needle pricking (injecting medical needs /pins /safety pins /other sharp objects) used on infected people
- Borrow personal items from infected people, such as shavers and toothbrushes
Hepatitis C infection usually causes no symptoms before the late stages of chronic infection. Actually, most people don't know that they have hepatitis C infection before liver damage is detected in routine medical tests decades later.
Who is at high risk of contracting hepatitis C through sex?
Certain conditions and certain sexual activities are reported to have a high risk of hepatitis C transmission, namely:
- Have multiple sexual partners
- Have another sexually transmitted infection (STI)
- Is HIV positive
- Having rough sexual relations
- Safely sex, such as not using condoms or dental dams
- Do not use sex safeguards correctly
The highest risk is transmission through infected blood, even though hepatitis C has been detected in semen. This transmission can occur from open wounds, incisions, or other tears to the skin. Skin contact with the skin during intercourse can also transmit blood from one person to another, so the virus can spread.
It is common for HIV and hepatitis C co-infections. Actually, from 50 to 90 percent of IV drug users who suffer from HIV also suffer from hepatitis C. This is possible because both of these conditions have similar risk factors, including sharing needles. and unprotected sex.
How to prevent transmission of hepatitis C?
Until now, there is no vaccine for hepatitis C, but there are ways to prevent infection. For example, stop using drugs intravenously and share needles. In addition, stop using contaminated items, such as needles. Always ensure that the equipment used has been sterilized. In fact, you may not share needles used for tattoos, body piercing, or acupuncture. This equipment must be carefully sterilized for safety. When needles and other equipment are used, ask the doctor to follow the correct procedure.
If you or your partner is diagnosed with hepatitis C, you can prevent transmission of the virus in many ways, including:
- Using condoms in every sexual contact, including oral sex and anal sex
- Use condoms correctly to prevent tearing or tearing during sex
- Refrain from engaging in sexual contact when you or your partner has open sores on the genitals
- Take a venereal disease test and ask your sex partner to do it too
- Just having sex with one partner (not mutually sex partners)
- Be honest with all your sex partners about your health status
- Take additional precautions if you are HIV positive (your chances of contracting the hepatitis C virus are much higher if you have HIV). For people at high risk of being infected with the HIV virus, tests are available at PMS treatment facilities.
A hepatitis C antibody test, also called an anti-HCV test, is a test that determines the presence of HCV antibodies in a person's blood. The body will produce antibodies to fight the hepatitis C virus if someone has been infected with this virus. If someone's test results are positive for antibodies, the doctor usually recommends a follow-up test to check whether the person has active hepatitis C. This test is called an RNA or PCR test.
You should see your doctor regularly to screen for STIs if you are sexually active and not in a monogamous relationship. Some viruses and infections, including hepatitis C, can cause no symptoms for several weeks after exposure. All the time the virus has not shown symptoms, you may have transmitted it to your sex partner without realizing it.
Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.
- How can we get hepatitis through sex?
- Guide to Safe Sex with Hepatitis Patients
- 7 Ways to Prevent Hepatitis