Hepatitis C Home > Diagnosis of Hepatitis C

The process of diagnosing hepatitis C includes taking a medical history and performing a physical exam. When a liver problem such as hepatitis is suspected, additional tests are used to confirm the diagnosis. Because several conditions can cause symptoms similar to those of hepatitis C, the healthcare provider will need to rule them out as part of the diagnostic process.

How Is Hepatitis C Diagnosed?

In order to make a diagnosis of hepatitis C, the healthcare provider will ask a number of questions, including questions about the person's:
 
  • Current symptoms
  • Other medical conditions
  • Current medications
  • Family history of medical conditions.
     
The healthcare provider will also perform a physical exam looking of signs or symptoms of hepatitis C. If the healthcare provider suspects a liver problem, he or she may recommend certain tests or procedures. These tests can include:
 
  • Liver enzyme test
  • Viral RNA (HCV RNA) test measured with PCR (polymerase chain reaction)
  • Liver biopsy.
     
(Click Hepatitis C Test for more information.)
 

Is the Diagnosis Hepatitis C or Another Medical Condition?

Before making a hepatitis C diagnosis, the healthcare provider will also consider other conditions that can share similar symptoms. These other medical conditions may include:
 
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last updated/reviewed:
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