Hepatitis means inflammation of the liver and can also, in addition to a virus, result from overuse of drugs or alcohol, illnesses, medications, or even an immune disorder.

The liver’s job is to clean your blood, help digest fats, and store energy. A liver that’s swollen and damaged by hepatitis C slowly stops working as it should.

Hepatitis C can stay active in your body and slowly damage the liver over time. This is called chronic hepatitis C. One may develop cirrhosis, a condition in which most of the liver has been destroyed and has become scar tissue.