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World Hepatitis Day
July 28, 2019
What is Viral Hepatitis?
Viral hepatitis is an infection that causes liver inflammation and damage. Several different viruses causes hepatitis, most commonly hepatitis A, B, or C.
Hepatitis A causes only acute infection and typically gets better without treatment after a few weeks. The hepatitis A virus spreads through contact with an infected person’s stool and unsafe food handling practices or uncooked seafood. You can protect yourself by getting the hepatitis A vaccine (2 doses, 6 months apart).
Hepatitis B usually causes chronic infection that may cause NO symptoms. Your doctor may recommend screening you for hepatitis B if you are pregnant or have a high chance of being infected. you can protect yourself from hepatitis B by getting the hepatitis B vaccine (3 doses at 0, 1 and 6 months). Chronic hepatitis B can increase your risk of developing a type of liver cancer.
Hepatitis C usually causes chronic infection that may not cause any symptoms. Your doctor may recommend screening you for hepatitis C if you have a high chance of being infected or were born between 1945 and 1965. Early diagnosis and treatment can prevent liver damage and liver cancer if you have severe scarring of your liver.
WHO IS AT HIGH RISK?
Hepatitis A: Persons who eat uncooked seafood and who travel internationally, particularly to developing nations.
Hepatitis B: Health care providers, men who have sex with men, and IV drug users; people who share needles.
Hepatitis C: Persons born between 1945-1965, men who have sex with men, and IV drug users; people who share needles.
WHAT CAN YOU DO?
Get immunized against Hepatitis A and B (if at risk).
Get tested for Hepatitis C (if at risk group). New treatments are available, easy and highly effective.
Talk to your Santa Barbara Neighborhood Clinics provider about immunizations and testing today! Call 1-844-594-0343.