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Hepatitis C is an infection of the liver caused by a virus. The virus is spread by contact with an infected person's blood. So there's a chance that you could have spread it to your baby before or during childbirth. This is more likely to happen if you also have HIV.
It will be important to get your baby tested for hepatitis C. This is usually done when a baby is 12 to 18 months old. But testing may be done sooner.
If your baby is infected with the virus, the test is repeated at or after age 3. This will tell the doctor if your child needs to be treated. Sometimes a child's body will get rid of the virus without treatment.
You need to be treated for hepatitis C, even if you feel fine now. It's important for your health, for your baby, and for others you're close to. Over time, the virus can damage your liver. Treatment can usually cure hepatitis C. It can also keep you from spreading the virus to others.
Follow-up care is a key part of your child's treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse advice line (811 in most provinces and territories) if your child is having problems. It's also a good idea to know your child's test results and keep a list of the medicines your child takes.
Call 911 anytime you think you may need emergency care. For example, call if:
Call your doctor or nurse advice line now or seek immediate medical care if:
Take good care of yourself too. Call your doctor or nurse advice line right away if:
Go to https://www.healthwise.net/patientEd
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Current as of: November 1, 2022
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:John Pope MD - Pediatrics & Christine Hahn MD - Epidemiology & Donald Sproule MDCM, CCFP - Family Medicine
Care instructions adapted under license by your healthcare professional. If you have questions about a medical condition or this instruction, always ask your healthcare professional. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information.
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