Hepatitis C: An In-Depth Guide

Symptom management

Hepatitis C causes changes to a person's body and these changes can manifest themselves as signs and symptoms of the infection. Some cause discomfort and can be managed. Others are significant medical complications, such as ascites (swelling in the abdomen), jaundice, or delayed blood clotting. Regardless of the degree of symptoms, they should be reviewed by a healthcare professional at regular intervals. If symptoms become severe, people should consider visiting a hospital emergency room. 

Click on a symptom to find out more about the condition, including cause and management. This chart lists symptoms of chronic hepatitis C and liver failure.

Blisters (porphyria cutanea tarda)

Blotchy skin (cryoglobulinemia)


Extreme confusion (hepatic encephalopathy)

Extreme tiredness (fatigue)

Flu-like symptoms

Fluid build-up (ascites or edema)

Itchy skin (pruritis)

Joint pain (arthralgia)

Loss of appetite (anorexia)

Lowered platelet count (thrombocytopenia)

Low sex drive (loss of libido)


Problems with thinking ("brain fog")

Purple or shiny, itchy bumps (lichen planus)

Right upper side discomfort

Sleep problems


Tingling or burning sensation (parathesia or peripheral neuropathy)

Vomiting blood (esophageal varices)

Yellowing of the skin (jaundice)

Note: Hepatitis C symptoms can be similar to the side effects of hepatitis C treatment. It is important to note that having certain symptoms does not automatically mean a person has Hep C. People should not fixate only on Hep C and ignore other possible health problems.