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Awareness regarding viral hepatitis

by Marshaneil Soumi D’ Rozario | 27TH JULY, 2019

awareness regarding viral hepatitis
 Image used for representational purpose only

The World Health Organization in 2016 reported globally, about 1.4 million people die each year from hepatitis. It is estimated that only 5% of people with chronic hepatitis know of their infection, and less than 1% have access to treatment. The vision of eliminating hepatitis as a public health threat by 2030 can be achieved if people and countries affected by this disease were better equipped and enabled to ‘know hepatitis’ and ‘act now’. Increasing access to hepatitis testing is the key to scaling up hepatitis treatment and care. Many people suffering from hepatitis are unaware of their infection, in part due to a lack of awareness and lack of access to testing services in countries.

 

Viral hepatitis can be termed as an inflammation of the liver owing to the hepatitis virus. The liver changes the food you eat into energy and tends to clean alcohol and other toxins from your blood, helps your stomach and intestines digest food, and makes proteins that your body needs to control and stop bleeding. Inflammation takes place when the immune system senses danger, like a virus, and sends white blood cells to surround the area to protect your body. This leads to redness, swelling, and pain. Thus, hepatitis damages the liver and may cause scarring of the liver, called cirrhosis. Furthermore, cirrhosis can put you at the risk of liver cancer, liver failure, and death. The most common types of viral hepatitis are Hepatitis A, B, and C. Dr. Roy Patankar, leading Gastroenterologist & Director of Zen Hospital shares vital facts about the disease.

 

The symptoms

 

Low-grade fever, tiredness, poor appetite, upset stomach, vomiting, stomach pain, dark urine; clay-colored bowel movements, joint pain, and jaundice are the symptoms of it. Moreover, people who are newly infected are most likely to have one or more of these symptoms, but some people with viral hepatitis do not have any symptoms.

 

Hence, if you spot the symptoms then you must immediately consult your doctor. Your doctor may ask questions about your health history, do a physical exam, or ask you to opt for blood tests that look for parts of the virus or antibodies that your body makes in response to the virus, while other tests may measure the amount of the virus in your blood.

 

The treatment

 

Specific emergency department (ED) treatment is indicated for viral hepatitis, other than supportive care which includes intravenous (IV) rehydration. Your doctor will also prescribe medications. But, the treatment may vary from person to person.

 

Prevention:

 

People who need treatment have not been treated, largely due to a lack of awareness, and access to hepatitis treatment services. Thus, people should be regularly screened and vaccinated. Washing hands after using the bathroom can be helpful. In case, you use needles or syringes, do not share them with others. Avoid sharing personal items like razors, nail clippers, toothbrushes, or glucose monitors. Do not get tattoos or body piercings from an unlicensed person. Hepatitis b and c virus have a high chance of cirrhosis and liver cancer. Hepatitis a and b can be prevented by vaccination. Hepatitis may be more dangerous in pregnancy and specialist should be consulted. Antiviral Rx is available in hepatitis b and c. The disease can be controlled in hepatitis b or in hepatitis c can be cured.

 

For Appointment: Dr. Roy Patankar, leading Gastroenterologist & Director of Zen Hospital


 Disclaimer: Welthi.com does not guarantee any specific results as a result of the procedures mentioned here, and the results may vary from person to person. Read more
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