Learn the ABCs of Viral Hepatitis
May is Hepatitis Awareness Month in United states. Hepatitis A, hepatitis B, and hepatitis C are three types of viral hepatitis. Although each type of viral hepatitis is caused by a different virus and is spread in different ways, they all affect the liver and can cause serious health problems
Irene Xagoraraki “uses this method to detect viruses in wastewater in Detroit. In a recent outbreak of hepatitis A, she found that the virus increased in the water about a week ahead of the rise in confirmed cases. “You can predict the outbreak,” she said” https://t.co/0IAbD2zQOv
— Dr Kathleen Bachynski (@bachyns) May 2, 2020
What is Hepatitis A
Hepatitis A is a contagious liver infection caused by the hepatitis A virus. People who get hepatitis A may feel sick for a few weeks to several months but usually recover completely and do not have lasting liver damage.
The hepatitis A virus is found in the stool and blood of people who are infected and can be spread when someone ingests the virus, usually through eating contaminated food or drink or through close personal contact with an infected person.
Is hepatitis A easily prevented ?
Hepatitis A is very contagious and people can even spread the virus before they get symptoms. However, hepatitis A is easily prevented with a safe and effective vaccine, which is recommended for all children at one year of age and for adults who may be at risk, including travelers to certain international countries.
Since the hepatitis A vaccine was first recommended in 1996, cases of hepatitis A in the United States have declined dramatically.
Unfortunately, adult vaccination rates remain low and in recent years the number of people infected has increased as a result of multiple outbreaks of hepatitis A across the United States.
While hepatitis A can affect anyone, certain groups are at greater risk of being infected in these outbreaks. To help stop the outbreaks, CDC recommends the hepatitis A vaccine for people who use drugs (including drugs that are not injected), people experiencing homelessness, men who have sex with men, people with liver disease, and people who are or were recently in jail or prison.
(Source – CDC)