The hep C virus is spread when your blood comes into contact with infected blood. This can happen in different ways:
Tattoos or body piercings done with contaminated needles or by a nonprofessional
Blood transfusions and organ transplants (infections caused this way are much less common in the United States since 1992)
Needlestick injuries in healthcare settings
Mother-to-child transfer at birth
Sexual contact with someone who has hep C (in rare cases)
Sharing needles, syringes, or other equipment to inject drugs
You cannot get hep C from sharing eating utensils. It is usually passed from person to person when an uninfected person’s blood comes in contact with infected blood.
people in the US are infected
with the hep C virus
of people infected with hep C
will develop chronic infection
If any of these or other risk factors apply to you, talk to your doctor about getting tested.
The most difficult part of living with hepatitis C was knowing I have it, not knowing how I got it, and fearing that someone could get it from me.”
Rick F., hepatitis C patient