Hepatitis Labs Interpretation Chart

Hepatitis B:

The lab test results are a bit complicated for Hepatitis B. By referring to this chart you’ll understand what your test result means.


Hepatitis C:

An HCV antibody test is typically reported as “positive” or “negative.”

Results of HCV viral load testing are reported as a number if virus is present. If no virus is present or if the amount of virus is too low to detect, the result is often reported as “negative” or “not detected.”


HCV Antibody HCV RNA HCV Infection
Negative No infection or too early after exposure for the test to be accurate; if suspicion remains high, retesting at a later time may be required.
Positive or Indeterminate    Negative Past infection or no infection (false-positive screen); additional testing if indicated
Positive or Weak or Indeterminate Positive Current infection

For monitoring purposes, an HCV viral load (HCV RNA quantitative) can indicate whether or not treatment is effective. A high or increasing viral load may be a sign that treatment is not successful whereas a low, decreasing, or undetectable viral load may imply that the treatment is working.

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