Hepatitis C does not always need treatment as the body’s immune system is often able to fight the infection on its own.Between 15-45% of people infected with Hepatitis C spontaneously clear the infection within 6 months without any treatment. However, of the remaining 55-85% will develop a chronic infection that could eventually lead to cirrhosis (scarring of the liver).
Until recently, treatment for Hepatitis C involved two drugs, pegylated interferon, a medication that encourages the immune system to attack the virus, and ribavirin, a medication that stops the virus from reproducing. They are usually taken as a weekly injection, for up to 48 weeks.
Drugs called Direct Antiviral Agents (DAAs) have been developed recently that allow more effective treatment, in less time and with fewer side effects than previous treatments. These drug are usually only taken for around 8-48 weeks, but that depends on the type of Hepatitis C you have, the exact drug you are taking and the severity of your condition.
Depending on the type of Hepatitis C you have, there is a 70-90% chance that you can be cured. IT is important to keep in mind however that you are not immune to re-infection and can contract Hepatitis C again.