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What is Hepatitis?

Hepatitis is a health condition and is one of the contagious liver infections among humans. The condition occurs due to the hepatitis A virus. It involves causing liver inflammation and affecting the liver’s functionality. Hepatitis is an outcome of the viral infection, but there are other causes as well.

Hepatitis takes place because of secondary results also such as alcohol, drugs, toxins, and medications. Inflammation caused by hepatitis is a reaction of tissue for irritation or injury. It usually results in swelling and causing severe pain. There are five main classifications of hepatitis that are A, B, C, D, and E.

Types of Hepatitis

The five different types of hepatitis include: 

  • Hepatitis A is one of the most common types and conditions that occurs as an outcome of infection i.e. Hepatitis A virus or HAV. It is a short-term condition, but acute. 
  • Hepatitis B is caused by HPV or hepatitis B virus and is a chronic condition that needs attention. 
  • Hepatitis C is caused by the hepatitis C virus or HCV. It is known to be the most common blood-borne viral infection that is also long-term.
  • Hepatitis D is known as the rarest form that happens jointly with hepatitis B infection. This hepatitis causes the issue of inflammation in the liver. However, an individual cannot transmit the infection if there is no presence of hepatitis B infection. 
  • Hepatitis E is a waterborne condition that is an outcome of the hepatitis E virus or HEV infection exposure. It is mainly discovered in areas that aren’t properly sanitised and where the water supply is contaminated. It is an acute disease and is majorly hazardous for pregnant ladies.

Hepatitis Symptoms 

The hepatitis symptoms take a few days or weeks to appear after an individual catches the virus. Some people might not experience symptoms. Here are the symptoms that people usually with hepatitis experience: 

  • Fever and fatigue are noticeable hepatitis symptoms that mustn’t be overlooked. 
  • The early symptoms that don’t often strike the head of anyone are appetite loss and feelings of vomiting. 
  • Nausea, abdominal pain, and dark urine also indicate hepatitis. 
  • One must not ignore the sign of clay-coloured bowel movements. 
  • Joint pain and jaundice also reflect the beginning of hepatitis.

Hepatitis causes 

Hepatitis causes entirely depend on the type of hepatitis an individual is experiencing:

  • Hepatitis A occurs when a person is exposed to the hepatitis A virus or HAV infection through food or water. 
  • Hepatitis B occurs when an individual comes in contact with bodily fluids like sexual intercourse, blood, or vaginal secretions. 
  • Hepatitis C is an outcome of also sexual intercourse, and other bodily fluids like blood or vaginal secretions containing Hepatitis B virus or HBV. 
  • Hepatitis D is a disease that occurs when an individual comes in contact with the blood comprising the hepatitis D virus or HDV. 
  • Hepatitis E is experienced by an individual exposed to the hepatitis E virus or HEV in food or water.
  • Hepatitis E is experienced by an individual exposed to hepatitis E virus or HEV in food or water.

Other causes

Hepatitis is known as a non-infectious condition caused by different reasons, but there are other generic causes as well which include: 

  • The excess consumption of alcohol affects the liver by damaging and causing inflammation. It is known as alcoholic hepatitis. It can even lead to liver failure as well. 
  • Another main cause of hepatitis is exposure to toxins and the misuse of medications. 
  • Autoimmune system response is among the hepatitis causes. Sometimes, the immune system mistakes the liver as dangerous and attacks it. This leads to causing inflammation ranging from mild to severe and hinders the functionality of the immune system. 

Hepatitis Diagnosis 

It is complex to comprehend the exact cause of hepatitis for the right treatment. Hence, the doctor will involve certain tests for hepatitis diagnosis. 

  • History and physical assessment are initiated by the doctor. It will help the doctor in identifying the risk factors an individual may have. The doctor will look for the signs of tenderness or pain by pressing the abdomen including assessing the signs of liver swelling and discoloration of the skin. 
  • In the next step, the doctor will order the liver function test for determining the efficiency of liver functionality. If the results are not normal, it indicates that there is an issue with the liver. 
  • Blood tests are ordered when the doctor finds abnormalities in the liver. Blood tests will help in identifying the problem source. It will also benefit in looking for the autoimmune signs. 
  • A liver biopsy is recommended by the doctor to evaluate the potential damage to the liver caused by hepatitis. It will allow the doctor to understand how inflammation or infection affected the liver. 
  • Ultrasound is also recommended to get images of the abdomen and to view the liver including other organs. It will consent the doctor to view the liver and organs nearby. The doctor can view fluid in the abdomen, liver damage, liver tumours, and gallbladder abnormalities. 

Hepatitis treatment 

The hepatitis treatment depends on the types and the severity of the disease. 

  • Hepatitis A: It is a short-term condition and doesn’t need treatment usually. If an individual experiences symptoms, then the doctor might suggest a dietary program to maintain hydration and nutrition. 
  • Hepatitis B: No specific treatment for this disease is required. If the condition is critical, then there will be a need for antiviral medications. This treatment can be expensive and might continue for months or even years. 
  • Hepatitis C: For the treatment of hepatitis C, antiviral medications are recommended as they are useful in treating acute conditions. A liver transplant is also recommended for individuals who develop cirrhosis or liver disease. 
  • Hepatitis D: Pegylated interferon alpha is the recommended treatment for hepatitis D. Although, this medication can cause side effects. So, people having liver cirrhosis and psychiatric conditions cannot go with this medication. 
  • Hepatitis E: There is no particular treatment for hepatitis E. Since it is an acute condition, it goes away on its own. The doctor recommends following a healthy lifestyle such as getting enough nutrients, drinking plenty of fluids, and restricting alcohol. 

Hepatitis prevention 

The doctor recommends taking the vaccine for hepatitis prevention. Two shots are given to prevent the disease. The first shot is followed by the booster shot which has to be taken by an individual after a gap of six months. Some tips are there for the following people to mitigate the risk of hepatitis: 

  • Parents should ensure that their one-year-old children receive the vaccine. 
  • Infants from six months to eleven months should get the hepatitis vaccine. 
  • People who are in direct contact with people who have had hepatitis. 
  • If anyone who has come into contact with laboratory workers should get the vaccine as they are vulnerable to the infection. 
  • Individuals who are into any kind of recreational drugs must ensure that they are hepatitis vaccinated. 
  • People with liver conditions must not ignore the vaccination. 
  • Lastly, anyone can get hepatitis vaccination to be safe. 

Why should you choose Rukmani Birla Hospital, Jaipur? 

It has been decades since Rukmani Birla Hospital, Jaipur has been giving the best and most exceptional care to its patients. The hospital was set up with the motive of making the healthcare facility accessible to every individual across the city. With the integration of our most experienced and highly trained doctors and other staff members, we have become one of the renowned names in the healthcare industry. 

Our smart-of-the-art technology assists us in offering fast, reliable, and affordable healthcare services.  Every day put in additional effort to meet the requirements of our efforts.

If you ever experience health conditions like hepatitis, ensure to get in touch with our expert doctors. They will make sure that the appropriate diagnosis is initiated and will offer the right treatment accordingly.


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