What are HCV antibodies?
HCV antibodies are specific antibodies that the body produces in response to a previous exposure to the Hepatitis C virus (HCV). These antibodies are used as markers to identify past contact with the virus and are a crucial part of diagnostic tests for Hepatitis C.
Why are HCV antibodies analyzed?
The analysis of HCV antibodies is used as a screening test to detect Hepatitis C virus infection. If a person has HCV antibodies, it indicates that they have had contact with the virus in the past. Further tests, including quantitative analysis of HCV RNA, are then conducted to confirm an active infection and assess the level of infection.
What can high levels of HCV antibodies indicate?
High levels of HCV antibodies can indicate a past or ongoing Hepatitis C infection. It is a sign that the immune system has responded to the virus.
What can low levels of HCV antibodies indicate?
Low levels of HCV antibodies can suggest the absence of prior exposure to the Hepatitis C virus or that the infection has progressed to a later stage. Low levels may also occur in the early stages of infection before antibody levels rise sufficiently to be detected.
What is the relationship between HCV antibodies and IVF treatment?
Prior to in vitro fertilization (IVF) treatment or any other form of assisted reproduction, it is common to test for Hepatitis C and other infections as part of the medical evaluation to ensure a safe pregnancy and minimize the risk of transmitting infections to the unborn child.