“Viral hepatitis – a group of infectious diseases known as hepatitis A, B, C, D, and E – affects hundreds of millions of people worldwide, causing acute and chronic liver disease and killing more than 1.4 million people every year, mostly from hepatitis B and hepatitis C. It is estimated that only 5% of people with chronic hepatitis know of their infection, and less that 1% have access to treatment.” – World Health Organization.
28 July 2017 marks the 10th World Hepatitis Day: a day that remains the single most important date in the year to give people living with viral hepatitis a voice, raise awareness and advocate for the elimination of the disease.
World Hepatitis Day has become a global day of action which unites policymakers, medical professionals and patients to raise awareness of the huge burden of viral hepatitis and to influence real change.
World Hepatitis Day is an annual effort to raise global awareness of viral hepatitis with the goal of eliminating the disease by the year 2030. On this day, here are some important facts to know about hepatitis.
For some people, hepatitis symptoms may take years to develop or won’t develop at all. A large percentage of people infected with viral hepatitis do not know they have the disease and are not treated.
Hepatitis inflames the liver and affects its ability to function. Chronic Hepatitis B and chronic Hepatitis C are the most serious forms of the disease, and a leading cause of liver scarring (cirrhosis) and liver cancer.
Most people acquire Hepatitis A by eating food or drinking water that is contaminated with the feces of an infected person. Nearly everyone who becomes infected with Hepatitis A recovers completely within a few weeks.
Vaccination is recommended for all children age 12 months or older, for travelers to certain countries, and for people at high risk for infection with the virus. The vaccine is given in two doses, six months apart, beginning at age 12 months. Contact your clinician if you are unsure when to get Hepatitis A vaccine or at what age Hepatitis A vaccine is given.
These include blood, saliva etc. It can also be passed from mother to child at birth.
All children should get their first dose of Hepatitis B vaccine at birth and complete the vaccine series by the age of 18 months. A booster dose of Hepatitis B vaccine for adults may be necessary for those at high risk of infection.
Today, most people become infected by engaging in high-risk behavior .There is currently no vaccine to prevent Hepatitis C.
Hepatitis D can only infect people with an active Hepatitis B infection. It is usually acquired by sharing drug needles with an infected person. Hepatitis E is spread by poor hygiene and sanitation, and is uncommon in developed countries.
The method of treatment depends on the type of hepatitis. Certain medications can help people manage hepatitis, and newer medications may even eradicate Hepatitis C.
The best precaution you can take for Hepatitis is vaccination. Vaccination provides a full proof protection against hepatitis. Also, getting tested can help you with treatment.
Stay Aware… Eliminate Hepatitis.
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