Many of us are already aware that our most favorite and loved film actor, Amitabh Bachchan, has been living with Hepatitis B for a long time now. He has also played an active role in spreading awareness around the taboo associated with the condition. He himself is an ambassador for it and recently speaking at an awareness initiative on Hepatitis B, he spoke about how he feels disturbed hearing about women with hepatitis being thrown out of the house. He showed his willingness to fight against the condition till the end of his life. He is 76 and was addressing a meeting held during the launch of National Action plan for fighting viral hepatitis in India.
Here’s is run down the causes, symptoms, diagnosis and treatment of hepatitis B. Even today there are thousands of cases of Hepatitis B in India, though they have been reduced significantly as compared to the last decade. Hepatitis generally occurs in the age group of 20 to 49 years. The chronic hepatitis is generally rare and is found amongst 5% to 10% of the people only. Though the carriers of Hepatitis B virus are over 1.4 million people.
Hepatitis B is an infection of the liver. The infection leads to scaring of the lever and at times even liver failure. The virus spreads form one person to another through blood transfusion, body fluids as well as open sores of the one suffering from Hepatitis B. Hepatitis B and C can turn out to be chronic condition while other A, C and E remain acute. Chronic Hepatitis B develops at a slow pace. It might not surface for as many as 3 months and can last from somewhere 2-12 weeks. The virus has the ability to live outside the body for a week.
The HBV infection risk include a certain group of people like Health Workers, people using IV drugs, people with multiple sex partners, kidney disease, people above 60 and having diabetes as well as people travelling to countries with high incidence for HBV infection.
Some of the symptoms of acute hepatitis B include dark urine, appetite loss, abdominal discomfort, weakness, fever and jaundice like symptoms.
The diagnosis of the condition is done mostly of the basis of blood tests after screening. The screening usually is based on risk factors mentioned above. The tests include surface antigen test that shows if the condition is contigeous, core antigen test that determines if you are infected or not, surface anti body test and liver function test to name a few.
To prevent Hepatitis B, you need to get yourself vaccinated and if you are exposed to the virus get in touch with the doctor within 24 hours. Acute hepatitis does not need treatment and is healed by itself. Though it is advisable that the person does take rest and remains hydrated. Chronic Hepatitis B is treated with antiviral medications which help you combat the virus and avoid the risk of future liver complications.
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*Sourced from the Internet