Hep C or hepatitis C is a viral infection that occurs in the liver. It causes inflammation in the liver and can cause fatal liver damage. The virus is mostly spread through contaminated blood. But this is not an incurable disease. Thanks to modern medicine, the infection can be treated by medication taken orally for about two to six months. This type of dosage has reported very few side effects, and the one who has experienced side effects claims that they subside within a few weeks after starting the treatment. However, every patient has a different experience with this infection. And depending on the type of employment they may have – the infection can affect it differently.
Can you be a nurse with hep c
That being said, having hepatitis C has nothing much to do with the profession of the person. There are very obligations regarding that, such as informing others at the workplace about your illness. As long as the job does not consist of any direct blood contact, there are no restrictions in work. But given the side effects of the medicines and the infection, it is still better to be careful.
Some of the symptoms of the hepatitis C virus are:
- Loss in appetite
- Bleeding and bruising
- Swelling of legs
- Fluid retention in the abdomen region
- Getting tired very easily and frequently
If the condition is serious, almost leading to cirrhosis, then the symptoms may also include drowsiness and weight loss, among other things. These symptoms can hinder the person at their workplace, so it is advised to be aware. But that does not mean working is completely out of the question. As the virus is spread and transferred from infected blood to uncontaminated blood, there is usually no risk of spreading the virus since very few jobs require blood-to-blood contact in the job.
Even health workers, like doctors and nurses especially – who have to deal with infected people daily – have low chances of spreading the virus because neither will they be able to spread it nor attract it from the patients. This is because of the extra sanitary measures and other precautionary measures that they take to restrict the contact as much as possible.
Even so, what about the nurses who are diagnosed with the infection? Since they deal with open wounds and other parts of the patient’s body due to medical reasons, there may be high chances of the patient getting the virus transmitted to them through the nurses in the hospitals. While there is no harm in being a nurse with hepatitis C.
the nurses can look up to prevent any unwanted consequences and a speedy recovery.
Look out for the symptoms
As a healthcare worker, it is important to take care of oneself. In that sense, if a person who is a professional nurse gets hepatitis C, it is necessary to create a routine for a fast recovery. In older people, the pain is worse, and they do not have a great immune system. So recovery can be a little slow. However, young nurses can recover faster. So it is recommended to be regular on the medication and make sure you are cautious of handling any contact that can risk the transmission of the virus from the nurse to others. For example, the patients or other doctors and nurses. Moreover, as soon as the symptoms hit or show up, get it checked by the physician. This way, you can start your treatment early without further complications.
Age will matter in the pace of recovery
As an older person, the body may not be as strong as once. So the recovery period may prolong a little longer than intended. Even so, the hepatitis C virus is not something that cannot be overcome at all. It is durable but may take some time, depending on how strong the immune system is. For the younger generation, it can be faster to recover, as they have stronger bodies comparatively. Even so, things like alcohol should be prohibited from consuming as that directly affects the liver. Moreover, it may react negatively to the medicine that you will be taking.
Be careful of the other medicines you are taking
Supplements, like iron supplements, may have to be stopped while you have hepatitis C or under the medication. This is because of the interaction that may cause unwanted consequences for your body. Have a diet with iron, and let that be the only source of iron you are taking for yourself. Even so, it is advisable to consult the doctor you will be under during your treatment about the already present prescription you might have and how it can react to the medicine you will be taking for hepatitis C. Specific antibiotics may interact negatively, so discuss those with the doctor as well.
Involve traditional ways to recover fast
Things like diet can play a huge part in the recovery from an illness. While there is no hurry to recover just because you are a nurse, it is obvious that no one wants to be sick for long. If you do not have one already, change into a healthy diet and include fruits and vegetables like broccoli, spinach, or blueberries. They are rich in vitamins and can help recover faster. Avoid high-calorie food like eggs and milk. Even cooking oil and sweet food like muffins should also not be consumed, at least until you have healed from the infection completely.
Incorporate physical activity as well
Exercise is very important to have a healthy body. It helps with managing stress by releasing happy hormones as well as helping in battling multiple diseases. It does not have to be any hard-core, but light cardio will go a long way. Morning walks or evening walks will help get the body system working, which can help with recovering from hepatitis C.
Conclusion: Can you be a nurse with hep c
These are some of the many things you can do to take care of your body and help in treating the infection. Moreover, your job as a nurse is affected by any disease, unless there are risks involved. An infection like hepatitis C can only be transmitted through blood contacts like unclean syringes, sexual intercourse, or unclean needles. If you are careful, then avoid these activities and prevent the infection from spreading. However, your own body is also important. So go to the doctor as soon as you feel uneasy, or any of the symptoms mentioned above show up. As a nurse, your job is to save people. But you should take care of yourself too.