Hepatitis B – Symptoms, Causes, Treatment and Prevention

What is Hepatitis B?

Hepatitis B is a liver inflammatory disease caused by HBV virus. It is a potentially chronic condition if it lasts for more than 6 months in those suffering from it. Not only does it increase the risk of liver failure, it may also cause liver cirrhosis or liver cancer. Though the disease can be prevented by taking the vaccine, some tend to develop long lasting complications.

What are the common symptoms of Hepatitis B?

Many symptoms of Hepatitis B are not apparent for months at stretch. Their severity may range from mild to severe. Many infections occur during childhood or infancy. This is because a Hepatitis B positive mother can transmit the virus during childbirth to her kid too. Other common symptoms of Hepatitis B infections are:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Fatigue and weakness
  • Abdominal pain
  • Dark urine
  • Joint pain
  • Fever
  • Jaundiced skin and eyes
  • Vomiting and nausea
  • Constipation
  • Loose stool

What are the common causes of Hepatitis B infection?

This viral infection gets transmitted through exchange of bodily fluids or blood. It does not get passed by coughing or sneezing. Other common ways of spreading HBV are:

  • Sexual contact
  • Needle sharing
  • Accidental needle sticks among healthcare workers
  • Transmission from mother to child during childbirth
  • Sharing everyday items like razors, toothbrushes and nail clippers with infected person

There is no danger of Hepatitis B spread through

  • Kissing on cheek
  • Sneezing or coughing
  • Shaking or holding hands or hugging
  • Breastfeeding
  • Eating food prepared by an infected person

What are the complications associated with Hepatitis B?

HBV infection can lead to some serious complications such as:

  • Liver scarring or cirrhosis that leads to long term impairment of the liver ability to function
  • Increased risk of liver cancer
  • Acute liver failure
  • Other chronic conditions like kidney diseases or blood vessel inflammation.

How is Hepatitis B treated?

Depending on whether a person suffers from acute or chronic Hepatitis B condition, your hepatologist will decide the treatment.

  1. Acute: In case you have acute Hepatitis B, no medical treatment is needed. Instead, you will be suggested to take plenty of rest, take ample fluids and maintain a healthy lifestyle and diet by even the best hepatologist in India.
  2. Chronic: There is no cure for chronic HBV infections. However, antiviral medicines may be prescribed by most of the best hepatologist in India to stop the progression of the disease. Ongoing medical evaluation needs to be done in infected people every 6-12 months. This helps the doctors in monitoring the progress of liver damage caused by the disease.

How to prevent Hepatitis B?

The best way of preventing the risk of getting HBV infection is through Hepatitis B vaccine. This is the safest and most effective way for all. Universal vaccination has been recommended by health agencies all around the world for all infants, children and adults. The vaccine is administered by the best liver doctor in Faridabad in three shots. Though Hepatitis B is a serious life threatening condition. There are several treatment options available today that help in preventing getting infected by this disease including vaccinations.

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