Do you have Hepatitis?

Hepatitis is the most common viral disease worldwide, with hundreds of millions of people around the globe affected from it. Mostly people are unaware of their hepatitis infection, which puts them at high risk of developing life threatening chronic liver disease, cirrhosis or liver cancer.

Timely treatment is essential as the disease is highly contagious and has serious illness consequences to the extent of being fatal. All these can be avoided and prevented but only by creating awareness.

What is hepatitis?

Hepatitis is an inflammation of the liver. If not treated on time, it progresses to fibrosis that may develop into cirrhosis or liver cancer. There are five main types of hepatitis infections – A, B, C, D and E and each have separate causes and preventive measures.

Cause of hepatitis

  • Eating contaminated food or water
  • Eating fish from polluted sewage water
  • Poor sanitation and poor personal hygiene
  • Being in close contact or sex with an infected person
  • Contact with an open wound of the infected person
  • Sharing needles, syringes, or direct contact with the blood of an infected person
  • Sharing personal belongings with infected person like razors, nail clippers, toothbrushes, needles, or anything else that might harbor traces of infected blood
  • Alcohol and certain drugs
  • From infected pregnant woman to her baby
  • Autoimmune diseases

Symptoms of hepatitis  

  • Jaundice (yellow skin or eyes)
  • Nausea, vomiting
  • Abdominal pain
  • Fatigue and fever
  • Dark urine
  • Diarrhea
  • Lack of appetite
  • Liver scarring
  • Liver cancer

Treatment of hepatitis

The treatment varies with acute or chronic hepatitis. Your doctor would recommend medications, lifestyle changes, abstain from alcohol and smoking, changes in dietary habits, adequate fluid intake and rest to treat the disease. If your liver is severely damaged due to hepatitis B,C, or D, a liver transplant may be recommended.

Prevention of Hepatitis

Maintain sanitation and good personal hygiene

  • Wash hands properly every time you come from outside or use toilet
  • Drink clean boiled water
  • Wash fruits and vegetables properly and cook all food properly
  • Avoid consuming raw food
  • If you area a healthcare worker, laboratory worker, doctor or nurse etc., take extra steps maintain hygiene. Wash your hands, utensils, and clothes in hot water.

Get vaccinated

Get shot for hepatitis A and B. Childhood vaccination of hepatitis A can be given between one to 18 years of age. The vaccine is effective for 15-20 years. Hepatitis B vaccination is 95% effective in preventing viral infections and its chronic consequences. There is no vaccine for hepatitis C.

If you need any information related to hepatitis or liver treatment like liver transplant, you can call our patient advisors for ‘free’ guidance.

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I want to thank GMA for being there whenever I needed sound advice for my IVF procedure. You have been always supporting and guiding. I wish you best of luck for all the good service you are doing by helping people to take well-informed decisions.