Hepatitis C and Addiction


Susan Fishman

Was this helpful? (23)

Hepatitis C often goes hand in hand with drugs and alcohol. If you have hepatitis C you may already know the struggles and pain of addiction. But there are also some serious health consequences.

Drug Use

Often hepatitis C, a disease transmitted through blood-to-blood contact, begins with drug use when people share needles to inject drugs or straws to snort cocaine. Once you have hepatitis C, the continued use of drugs can complicate matters. Not only can it do harm to your liver, but because drug use is addictive, injection drug users (IDUs) often repeatedly share needles or straws, which can make the users “super-spreaders” of the virus. A recent study reported that each IDU infected with hepatitis C is likely to infect about 20 others within the first three years of initial infection.

In the last few years, a lot has changed in the way we treat hepatitis C. Do you know all the facts?

Medical Reviewer: William C. Lloyd III, MD, FACS Last Review Date: Oct 23, 2015