In 1997, I donated blood at a blood drive at University at Buffalo. A couple of months after, I got a letter from the ARC saying that I tested positive for Hep C. I don't have the letter anymore, but I remember it saying something about me having antibodies to HCV in my bloodstream. I went to a doctor and had some kind of blood test and they said I didn't have Hep C. I'm thinking, OK, maybe the ARC got my blood mixed up with someone else's.
Eight years later, I try donating blood again through a different blood donating agency in Florida. Same thing happened; I get a letter saying I have Hep C antibodies in my blood, and that I need to be tested to make sure I don't have it. Now I'm worried.
1) How could I have gotten exposed to it? I never tried IV drugs, never snorted coke, at that time I wasn't a healthcare worker, and in 1997 I hadn't even had sex yet. I did have a manicure once, sometime between 1995-1996, but the place seemed clean and I though they used clean instruments.
2) Why do I still have antibodies so long after I would have been exposed to it? Does that mean I could still have the virus but my body is keeping it in check? Could the blood test I had in 1997 have been wrong and I actually had Hep C and just let it run rampant for close to a decade?
Just a little more info, though this is a little bit more private; my father was a big cocaine user for many years, as I found out years after him and my mom broke up. It is highly possible that my dad could have Hep C. though I don't know for sure since I haven't talked to him in like 13 years. If he had it, how could I have picked it up from him? Maybe using his razor to shave my legs or something? I sure as hell would never had used his toothbrush or anything like that
Any information would be highly appreciated.