CHICAGO (WLS) — Hepatitis C cases have been rising in recent years, significantly impacting women of childbearing age.
Hepatitis C can cause low birthweight, liver disorders and pre-term births in an infant.
A medical challenge that exists with this virus is doctors not treating pregnant individuals who carry Hepatitis C until after they give birth, which is something Northwestern Medicine and Lurie Children’s Hospital is changing.
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Dr. Ravi Jhaveri, head of pediatric infectious diseases at Lurie Children’s Hospital, shared more about Hepatitis C.
“We recommend testing for Hepatitis C,” Jhaveri said. “Any time any adult sees their doctor, it should be part of their visit, especially during pregnancy.”
Jhaveri said the medications developed to fight this virus are powerful, and can effectively cure any patient.
“The treatment is once per day with very few side effects,” Jhaveri said. “We’re talking almost 100% of people being cured.”
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If Hepatitis C is not treated, Jhaveri said it can affect a person’s liver and the risk for fibrosis and cancer can go up.
For more information, you can visit What Is Hepatitis C?