Hepatitis is an enlarged liver condition caused mainly by viral infection. The different types of hepatitis are:
Each form of Hepatitis is caused by different viruses.Hepatitis A and E are acute hepatitis. Hence, are short termed whereas Hepatitis B, C, D are chronic hepatitis.There are other forms of Hepatitis which includes Autoimmune Hepatitis and Hepatitis that occurs as a byproduct of secondary sources such as medicines, drugs and alcohol.
Alcoholic Hepatitis and Viral Chronic Hepatitis B and C also cause Cirrhosis as a byproduct. Acute Hepatitis symptoms and Chronic Hepatitis symptoms may differ as per situations. The Acute Hepatitis is short termed and Chronic Hepatitis is long termed.
Caused by Hepatitis Virus (HAV), this type of acute Hepatitis is a disease that is communicable and can be prevented by vaccination. It is short termed disease which usually gets cured within a few months of infection.
The HAV in most cases causes mild illness and gets cured by its own. A person many a times may not even realize that they are affected.
Hepatitis A is common in children. People suffering from Hepatitis A show certain symptoms such as:
The most common way of communication of HAV or causes of acute Hepatitis A are through fecal contact with an infected individual. It may also include consuming contaminated food or water.
Eating raw food, drinking tap water in infected areas, also not washing hands after use of toilets promote spread of Hepatitis A.
CDC provides guidelines for both the dosages as per different age groups of people:
For Single Antigen Dose: https://www.cdc.gov/hepatitis/hav/havfaq.htm#protection
For IG Dosage: https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/66/wr/mm6636a5.htm?s_cid=mm6636a5_e
IG is given to those individuals who are at alarming rate of fatal Hepatitis A, majorly people above the age 40.
Hepatitis A vaccination is to be taken by
Hepatitis B is a chronic Hepatitis and stays in the body for a longer duration of time.
In the initial weeks and months, there are no acute symptoms but after a period of time it can cause serious damage in the body like cirrhosis, liver damage, liver cancer or liver failure. If happened to a child, he or she carries it along for a lifetime.
The risk of Hepatitis B being chronic is subjective to age and occurrence. If infected in childhood, it stays with the person lifelong.
The symptoms noticed also varies with age and the stage at which the virus is diagnosed. Children below the age of 5 and recently infected people do not show any acute symptoms for HBV.
Hepatitis B is not spread through food, water, sharing utensils, hugging, kissing, coughing and sneezing.
HBV virus can survive for 7 days outside our bodies and can even cause the infection after.
There is no treatment for Chronic Hepatitis or for acute infections, however there are treatments that can act as a supportive remedy.
There are several antiviral medications that can be prescribed for HBV. There are certain guidelines provided by American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD) for treatment of chronic Hepatitis B- https://www.aasld.org/publications/practice-guidelines-0
Vaccination is the best way to prevent Hepatitis B. Any person looking for immunity against the HBV virus can use vaccination
Person highly allergic to the prior dose of Hepatitis B vaccine or yeast should opt for a different combination of vaccination.
The Vaccination effect lasts for about 30 years in healthy individuals thus ensuring a long term protection against chronic Hepatitis
Hepatitis B vaccination can also be given during pregnancy and lactation.
The vaccination can also be given after exposure to HBV, however they may not receive any benefit from it.
The best way to avoid getting chronic hepatitis is to prevent yourselves from situations of probable spread of infection.
Also known as ‘Delta Hepatitis’, Hepatitis D is caused by Hepatitis D virus HDV. It only occurs to people suffering from Hepatitis B.
HDV is an incomplete virus and flourishes only in presence of helper virus HBV. It can be acute Hepatitis or chronic Hepatitis.
Hepatitis D is transmitted through percutaneous or mucosal contact with infectious blood and occurs as a coinfection or superinfection with HBV.
Hepatitis D does not have any vaccination but can be avoided by taking Hepatitis B vaccination.
These treatments give you chances of curing the Hepatitis but need to give Hepatitis immunity.
There are many types of hepatitis, acute hepatitis at early stages cure themselves within few weeks. There are vaccinations and antiviral medications also available for preventing Hepatitis. Chronic Hepatitis however cannot be cured and needs to take necessary measures to prevent liver damage.
If suffering from Hepatitis, one must follow all the precautions needed to be taken as suggested by the doctor, if perusing any drugs or alcohol, he or she must stop it immediately.
Lower consumption of alcohol does not guarantee immunity to liver enlargement or infection. Hence one must be careful and not neglect possibilities.