Diagnosing Hepatitis C

If you think there is a chance that you have been exposed to hepatitis C, or you are worried that you may have contracted it, taking a free test can help to put your worries at ease, and allow you to start treatment if you need it.

It’s important to get tested for hepatitis C because some people do not notice symptoms so you could feel healthy whilst living with the virus.

The only way to know if you have hepatitis C is to have a very simple test.

Testing for hepatitis C usually consists of 2 tests. These are

  1. Hepatitis C antibody test; and the
  2. Hepatitis C RNA/PCR test.

The results for these tests usually take 2 weeks to come back.

These 2 tests can often be done with the same sample of blood, this is most commonly a finger prick test, where a small amount of blood is dropped onto a card or into a small tube.  These are not like the normal blood tests you would have where blood is taken from a vein, they are much easier to do.

This is what the different results can mean:

What happens if you find out you have the hepatitis C virus?