Hepatitis C virus (HCV) causes damage to the liver and this can lead to cirrhosis, (scarring of the liver), and eventually liver failure and death.

Around 1 in 10 HIV positive Australians also have hepatitis C – but many are not aware of it. A higher number of cases are occurring in men with HIV.

Hepatitis C can be more serious and progress faster in people with HIV because it can accelerate the progress of both infections and make both more difficult to treat. So regular testing is even more important. If left undiagnosed and untreated, it can seriously damage your liver, which can make it harder to take HIV medication.

To reduce the risk of hepatitis C transmission:

* Use gloves for fisting/fingering and condoms for fucking/toys during group sex. Wash hands, dicks, and toys and use a new glove or condom when changing arses.

* Shared lube may be a risk for hepatitis C. Bring your own.

* Be aware of blood where you play.

Next week: Hep C and injecting drug use

info: For more information on Hepatitis C, go to www.hep.org.au or visit Positive Life NSW www.positivelife.org.au, www.wrappedorraw.org.au

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