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Free Essays On Hepatitis

Hepatitis B can be prevented with a highly effective vaccine, but this year

ten to thirty million people will become infected with the hepatitis B virus. I feel

that because this disease is preventable, only knowledge can help reduce the

number of people infected.

Hepatitis B is a serious liver disease caused by the hepatitis B virus. This

virus is a blood-borne pathogen. It is one hundred times more infectious than

HIV. "Hepatitis B is one of the most frequently reported vaccine preventable

diseases in the United States," according to the Centers for Disease Control.

This disease is transmitted through oral, vaginal, and anal sex. You can

also acquire the disease through sharing needles, toothbrushes, and razors, or if

you come in contact with infected blood. For these reasons, the people at the

highest risk of contracting the disease are: anyone who is sexually active;

health, dental, and emergency workers; adoptive families with children form

Asia, Africa, South America, Eastern and Mediterranean Europe (as these areas

have a high number of people infected); drug users; and anyone in close contact

with someone infected. This is not as scary as it seems, for you cannot contract

the virus through sneezing, coughing, or holding hands.

A surprising fact about hepatitis B, considering it is preventable, is that

one in twenty people are or will be infected in their lifetime. There are one

million people infected in the United States. More than 350 million people

worldwide are chronic carriers of the virus. A chronic carrier is someone with the

virus in their blood, and can who can pass the disease to others.

Fifty percent of those infected with the virus (a.k.a. HBV) do not develop

symptoms. HBV is often called the "Silent Infection". Another forty nine percent

experience fevers, fatigue, nausea, and vomiting. Many people think that it is

just the flu and ignore their symptoms. Some other symptoms include abdominal

pain or swelling, jaundice, dark colored urine or light colored bowel movements.

The other one percent develops acute fulminant hepatitis. Of those infected with

it, sixty to ninety percent of all cases result in fatalities. It is characterized by

fatigue- most often resulting in collapsing, and jaundice- yellowing of the skin

due liver malfunctions.

There is no medical treatment for hepatitis. Although, with bed rest ninety

percent of those infected will develop antibodies and fight off the disease. If the

body fails to fight it off, some (five to ten percent) will develop chronic hepatitis.

These people have an increased risk of liver problems, like cirrhosis (hardening

of the liver) and liver cancer. Some chronic cases will need liver transplants.

There is no cure for hepatitis B, but there are some drugs to help. Interferon

helps to quicken the rates of remission. There are also two drugs that are in the

last phase of FDA approval- lamivudine and famciclovir. These are thought to

be available toward the end of the year.

If you have contracted HBV, you should immediately contact a doctor, and

get regular checkups. If you are pregnant you should make sure to tell your

doctor so they can protect your baby. Also, make sure close contacts are

vaccinated. And most of all- no alcohol, because it will further damage your

liver.

There is only one sure way to protect yourself- get vaccinated. The

vaccine is very safe and effective. It is in the form of three shots, given over a

period of six months. The shots can be given at a doctor's office or at school

clinics.

One very informative source is The Hepatitis B Foundation. The address

is:

700 East Butler Avenue

Doylestown, PA 18901

(215) 489-4900

For additional help contact your doctor.

Hepatitis B is a very infectious disease, but the most important thing to

remember is that it can be prevented with three simple shots. There is no

excuse as to why anyone should not be vaccinated!

Hepatitis A Essay

1051 Words5 Pages

Introduction:

Hepatitis is caused by a virus that is targeted at the liver, one of your most important organs!! Specifically, it causes inflammation and injury to the liver. Hepatitis comes in many different forms, five to be exact. There is Hepatitis A, B, C, D & E. Hepatitis is caused mainly by viruses, all of which are set on shutting down your liver. I will be specifically concentrating on Hepatitis A in this report. Hepatitis A is also known as infectious Hepatitis, an extremely contagious viral infection that often effects young children and young adults, especially those in large groups. It has been known to break out in schools, summer camps and music festivals etc.

Hepatitis A is also very common in developing nations.…show more content…

This keeps up for a few days and you begin to feel a loss of appetite as well as nausea. A low grade fever between 100 °f - 102 °f is present. A pain and discomfort in the abdomen above the liver is also common, due to enlargement of the liver. After a few days of torture, a person’s urine becomes darker than usual and then jaundice, (a yellowish discoloration of the skin) appears. Jaundice and the dark urine indicate that liver is not functioning properly in removing a reddish-yellow pigment called bilirubin from the blood.

Treatment / Prevention:

There is no specific treatment for viral Hepatitis. Bed rest and preferably hospitalization is a necessary step in the early treatment. Even though Hepatitis A is a highly contagious virus, isolation of the patient to a single room is not necessary. However, proper prevention methods such as washing your hand after handling the patient, careful handling of the body fluids and feces and wearing gloves when drawing blood is important.

Prolonged bed rest is not essential for full recovery but patients feel better with restricted physical activity. A high calorie diet is a good idea and because many patients have nausea late in the day, the major caloric intake is best given in the morning. Intravenous feeding is necessary if the patient has continuos vomiting. Isolation of the patient to a single room and bath room is unnecessary, however the patient and other people in contact should be

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