FAQ - hepatitis b
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what is hepatitis and how does it spread? What forms of hepatitis exist and what are complications of untreated hepatis?

Hepatitis simply refers to inflammation and/or injury of the liver. There are many causes of hepatitis -- too many to list here. The most common causes of hepatitis include infections (viral being the most common, but also bacterial and fungal), alcohol abuse, medications (certain over-the-counter and prescription medications can lead to liver injury), autoimmune disorders and fatty deposits in the liver, such as those that may form in diabetic patients.
When most people refer to hepatitis, they are probably talking about viral hepatitis, which is classified into several types. Hepatitis A, which is very common in underdeveloped countries, is acquired from water or food sources. This type of hepatitis is usually mild and may sometimes be discovered only by blood testing. Hepatitis A never leads to chronic liver disease.

The hepatitis B virus is most often contracted via blood contact -- such as with IV drug abusers sharing needles or health care workers who are stuck by tainted needles. It can also be spread via sexual contact and from mother to baby during childbirth. Hepatitis B can lead to chronic liver disease and the complications that result from it.

Hepatitis C is spread via blood and body-fluid contact (as with Hepatitis B). Hepatitis C used to be the most common type of hepatitis acquired via blood transfusions until a test for it became available in the 1980s. Hepatitis C commonly leads to chronic hepatitis and over many years can lead to chronic liver disease manifested by cirrhosis.

Other much less common types of viral hepatitis include hepatitis D (which is seen most commonly in IV drug abusers and which requires co-infection with hepatitis B), hepatitis E (seen in pregnant women and spread in a similar fashion to hepatitis A) and hepatitis G (commonly seen in patients who are undergoing hemodialysis). It is speculated that other types of viral hepatitis have yet to be identified.  (+ info)


Is it possible to get hepatitis from kissing? How about if you share a drink with someone?

Hepatitis B is spread through bodily fluids. You could contract hep b or hep A this way. Hep C is totally blood to blood contact...  (+ info)

What is the difference between hepatitis c and hepatitis b?

What is the difference between hepatitis c and hepatitis b? And also can it be possible to have a false positive on a Hepatitis B test? My friend tested negative 4 months ago for it, but now she got a test again and it came back positive this time, but nothing has changed in her life. Same sex partner, no cheating, no drug use or anything. So she went back today to get another re-test, thinking that the positive test was a mistake. We won't find out the answers for a few days though. But basically the reason why she gets tested so often for this type of stuff is because she is trying to get pregnant with invitro, and they must test for all of these diseases before they will inseminate you with the fertilized egg.
Anyway, if she does really have Hepatitis B, why isn't she sick? And will she eventually get sick? And also, how long does it take to show up on a blood test before you do test positive for Hepatitis B, I mean can she have caught it a year ago, but it just now showed up?

The main difference is that they are caused by different viruses.  (+ info)

What are the chances of getting hepatitis from a tattoo?

I'm getting a tattoo soon, and I am positive that I want one. The only thing I'm worried about is getting hepatitis- a blood disease that I've heard could be easily passed along when getting a tattoo- much easier to get than AIDS. I'm very, very nervous about this.

Does anyone know what the chances are of getting hepatitis from a tattoo? Do you know anyone who's gotten it from a tattoo? Or maybe you did? I just need all the information i can get about hepatitis, how it is contracted, etc. The place I'm going for my tattoo says that the tattoo artists have been vaccinated with hepatitis A and B shots. So that being said, how much of a chance is there? And isn't there a hepatitis C?

Yes, I know LOTS of people who have gotten Hep C through tattoos. Hepatitis A & B have vaccines, but there is no vaccine for Hep c (HCV) which is a disease that is transmitted by blood to blood contamination. And the thing that makes HCV (and HBV) so contagious is that it can live outside the human body for days, on instruments like needles and in the ink, too. A reputable tattoo shop will use new, disposable needles that are to be opened right in front of you. The ink should be poured into small containers then the leftover ink should be thrown out, not reused. The tattoo artist should be wearing gloves, and the environment should be clean. If all those things happen, then you won't get HCV from a tattoo.
I was diagnosed seven years ago with HCV. I never had a tattoo. My husband and I ride motorcycles with many of our friends who are bikers. I've been teased many times because I won't get a tattoo, but after having to give myself interferon injections three times a week for 6 months, I don't want to take a chance of exposing myself to a HCV risk factor. I cleared the virus on the chemotherapy treatment and don't want to go through it again if I don't have to. You will need to do the research and make an educated decision. Best wishes to you.  (+ info)

What type of hepatitis is it possible to contract from a blood transfusion?

My surgeon said there is a 1 % chance of contracting hepatitis from the blood transfusion I just rec'd. Does anyone know what type of Hepatitis he means? I have been vaccinated against A and B. He said of that 1 % chance there is only a 1 % chance that the hepatitis is untreatable.

PENWESTERN - There are many different types of hepatitis. Of those caused by a virus during blood transfusion, the TWO are hepatitis B and hepatitis C. Though both are tested on blood donations, in the very first stages of infection these viruses may not be detected while they are still infectious. Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C are more serious infections that are transmitted through infected bodily fluids such as blood and semen. Because of your vaccination ("immunizations") you do NOT have to worry about hepatitis B. Hepatitis A is NOT transmitted by transfusion. There is, as yet, no effective vaccine against hepatitis C though much effort is being made to develop such an immunization.  (+ info)

How common is hepatitis after a blood transfusion in the US?

What type of hepatitis shows up in these cases? Is it possible for hepatitis to show symptoms at the 4 months mark?

Very rare if you received blood after 1987.

It is tested carefully now - and while nothing is 100% effective - getting hepatitis now is rare.

And yes, if there are any questions - get tested after 6-9 months to be 100% certain.

You did not mention Hepatitis A,B, or C.

A is fecal-oral transmission (isn't that gross? Someone doesn't wash their hands after stooling, maybe prepares your food and bingo - you catch Hep A).

B and C are blood borne.

A common transmission for these are razors and tooth brushes.

NEVER use someone else's razor or tooth brush!!!  (+ info)

What are the chances of getting hepatitis by slipping and injuring the knee on the streets?

I slipped on the sidewalk today while walking down the streets of a residential neighborhood. I got a bleeding scratch on my knee, and I'm not sure if I might get hepatitis from it! Can somebody tell me what are the chances of getting hepatitis from it???

Was your knee covered when you fell? Did the covering tear? Was the sidewalk wet, or in the sun?

There are a number of types of hepatitis, each has it's preferred method of transmission. Hepatitis is a virus, and how long it can exist outside of the body depends on it's surroundings, and what it is exposed to. Sunshine tends to kill organisms, as does heat, and chemicals like bleach. (This is just very general, and not by any means the whole story.)

Generally, there is fecal to mouth transmission, sexual transmission, bodily fluids to mouth or any orifice transmission, drug paraphenalia transmission.

Is someone with Hepatitis took a c...p on the street, or someone walked in it and put it on the sidewalk where you fell, and it was recent enough...and you cut your knee, and it got in your blood stream...then maybe you could get it...but it would be pretty rare that all of that would happen in just the right way for your to get it.

Always wash any cut with soap and water, WELL. You might worry a little more about Tetanus as the other responder said. There are vaccines for both Tetanus and Hepatitis.  (+ info)

How long after possibly being exposed to Hepatitis should you get a test to get the most accurate results?

My girlfriend is a dental assistant and was transferring tools that were used to clean the mouth of a patient that previously had hepatitis. One tool poked her finger thru the bag and she squeezed it until it bled. She doesn't believe there was blood on the tool and she had her Hep vaccinations last year. There's probably very little or no chance she could contract Hepatitis thru it, but how long after the incident should she wait to get a blood test to confirm it?

She needs to run a full course of Hep B vaccine, which is three shots. Did she get her blood drawn after the shots to make sure she was immune? There is no shot for Hep C.

How long after exposure to HCV does it take to test positive for HCV antibodies?
Anti-HCV can be found in 70% of people when symptoms begin (6-7 weeks after exposure) and in about 90% of people within 3 months after symptoms begin. However, many people with HCV have no symptoms.

How long after exposure to HCV does it take to test positive with PCR? With the PCR test, it is possible to find HCV within 1-2 weeks after being infected with the virus.  (+ info)

Can you get hepatitis from exposure to urine?

I understand that hepatitis A is usually transmitted via fecal matter, but can you get any form of hepatitis from exposure to infected urine?

c-no-unless there is an infection to where blood would be an issue and you had an open wound.
d-maybe since some of those with hbv will be dually infected with hepatitis d
e-(like a) no-rare anyway in the united states  (+ info)

Can someone who was previously infected with acute hepatitis C but has been cleared of it still infect others?

"The other 15% of hepatitis C virus infected individuals simply have an acute infection; that is, one that resolves spontaneously in a few weeks or months".
Is there still a possibility of someone who fits the above description, to infect their spouse with hepatitis C?

Hep C is super, super hard to transmit.
If your Hep C is cleared, that means you have NO active viral particles in your blood. That is good!
Even if you have chronic positive, it is still hard to transmit, for example, my husband's mother has had it since before he was even born. He does not have it, and his dad does not have it. So, you see it does not transmit so easily.
I would not be freaking out at this point at all.  (+ info)

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