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Viral Hepatitis


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Should You Get Tested for Hepatitis C?

for Veterans and the Public

Should I get tested?

Talk with your VA healthcare provider about being tested if any of the following are true for you.

If you:

  • Wish to be tested
  • Were born between 1945 and 1965
  • Are a Vietnam-era Veteran (dates of service 1964 through 1975)
  • Are a current or former injection drug user
  • Received a blood transfusion or organ transplant before 1992
  • Are on hemodialysis treatment
  • Work in health care or public safety and had a recent needlestick or injury or mucosal exposure to HCV-positive blood
  • Obtained tattoos or body-piercings in non-regulated settings
  • Have ever shared equipment to snort drugs
  • Had 50 or more sex partners
  • Have current or past sex partner(s) with HCV infection
  • Are infected with HIV
  • Were treated for a blood clotting problem before 1987
  • Have abnormal liver test results
  • Were born to a mother infected with HCV
  • Were incarcerated

The HCV test is available for all Veterans enrolled in VA healthcare. See the printable HCV testing handout for information about getting tested at a VA facility.

If you are at risk for hepatitis C, you should consider getting tested. You have to get blood tests to find out if you have HCV because the symptoms of hepatitis C infection often are very mild. In fact, you may not have any symptoms at all.

If you are diagnosed with hepatitis C, you can begin to get the health care and support you need. You will need to learn how to take care of your liver and yourself. You will also need to learn how to avoid giving the virus to others. Because it stays in your body, you can give the hepatitis C virus to others (such as family members and sexual partners).