What are the symptoms of hepatitis C?

A Answers (5)

  • People with hepatitis C may or may not have symptoms. Symptoms that occur are usually mild or flu-like and can include:
    • nausea and vomiting
    • loss of appetite
    • abdominal pain, fluid buildup in the abdomen
    • jaundice (yellow skin and eyes)
    • fever
    • dark urine, clay-colored stools
    • fatigue
    • itchiness
    • joint pain
    If you know you've been exposed to hepatitis C, it's important to get tested. Early diagnosis of chronic hepatitis C can help decrease the risk of severe damage to the liver.
    Helpful? 2 people found this helpful.
  • Hepatitis is a term used to describe inflammation of the liver, and hepatitis C is a virus that is usually spread through blood-to-blood contact and is normally associated with IV drug use, although it has also been associated with blood transfusions and dirty medical equipment. Unfortunately, hepatitis C infection is commonly asymptomatic and causes symptoms in only approximately 15% of patients. Symptoms of an acute infection are usually very nonspecific and can include fatigue, decreased appetite or weight loss, or muscle and joint aches. If a patient develops chronic hepatitis C, he can develop cirrhosis, which is scarring of the liver, and this can lead to a different set of symptoms.
    Helpful? 1 person found this helpful.
  • AHealthwise answered

    Most people who are infected with hepatitis C, even people who have been infected for a while, usually don't have symptoms.

    If symptoms do develop, they may include:

    • Fatigue.
    • Joint pain.
    • Belly pain.
    • Itchy skin.
    • Sore muscles.
    • Dark urine.
    • Jaundice, a condition in which the skin and the whites of the eyes look yellow.

    A hepatitis C infection can cause damage to your liver (cirrhosis). If you develop cirrhosis, you may have:

    • Redness on the palms of your hands caused by expanded small blood vessels.
    • Clusters of blood vessels just below the skin that look like tiny red spiders and usually appear on your chest, shoulders and face.
    • Swelling of your belly, legs and feet.
    • Shrinking of the muscles.
    • Bleeding from enlarged veins in your digestive tract, which is called variceal bleeding.
    • Damage to your brain and nervous system, which is called encephalopathy. This damage can cause symptoms such as confusion and memory and concentration problems.

    Many other health problems are linked with long-term cirrhosis. There also are many other conditions with similar symptoms.

    Contagious and incubation periods

    The incubation period, the time it takes for symptoms to appear after the hepatitis C virus has entered your body, is from 2 weeks to 6 months.

    But you can spread the virus to someone else at any time after you are infected, even if you don't have symptoms.

    This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. To learn more visit

    © Healthwise, Incorporated.

  • AScripps Health answered

    Because hepatitis C can have no symptoms until considerable damage has been done to the liver, up to 75 percent of those infected don’t even know they have the virus. If newly infected people do have symptoms, they can be very ambiguous, such as nausea, poor appetite, fatigue or dark urine. These symptoms are easily mistaken for flu or an upset stomach, so people tend not to seek medical care.

  • Most people have no symptoms until the virus causes liver damage, which can take 10 or more years to happen. Others have one or more of the following symptoms:

    Yellowish eyes and skin, called jaundice A longer than usual amount of time for bleeding to stop Swollen stomach or ankles Easy bruising Tiredness Upset stomach Fever Loss of appetite Diarrhea Light-colored stools

    This answer is based on source information from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.

    Helpful? 1 person found this helpful.
Did You See?  Close
What are the symptoms of hepatitis C (HCV)?