The World Health Organization observes World Hepatitis Day on July 28 each year. The 28th of July was designated as the birthday of Nobel laureate Dr. Baruch Blumberg, who discovered the hepatitis B virus (HBV) and created a definitive diagnosis and vaccination for the disease. WHO has urged all nations worldwide to collaborate to eradicate viral hepatitis as a public health concern, by the year 2030.
Your liver is an auxiliary organ in the digestive system that aids digestion and performs a variety of other vital tasks. These tasks include the production of bile to facilitate the breakdown of food into energy, the creation of important compounds such as hormones, and the removal of contaminants from the blood. But what if it becomes infected with a virus?
Hepatitis - is a term described for inflammation of the liver. The majority of hepatitis cases are caused by infection with hepatitis virus A, B, or C. Hepatitis can also be caused by liver damage due to alcohol, drugs, and certain medications. Some hereditary illnesses can induce hepatitis, as well as persistent bile flow restriction. Hepatitis can also be autoimmune. Some types of hepatitis cause moderate symptoms of hepatitis, while others can be significant or even fatal.
Around 40 million individuals in India have hepatitis B, while at least 6 million have hepatitis C. Every year, around 176,000 patients have to lose their lives as a result of hepatitis B and C diseases. However, in India, Hepatitis A (HAV) is endemic; the majority of the population is infected asymptomatically during infancy and has life-long antibodies. There are five major hepatitis viruses: A/(HAV), B(HBV), C(HCV), D(HDC), and E(HEC). The extremity of the disease and subsequent therapy are determined by the kind of hepatitis and the health of the patient; this could result in fibrosis or cancer. Hepatitis is defined by yellow complexion (jaundice), arthritis, appetite loss, fever of low intensity, bowel motions that are clay-colored, black urine, discomfort, joint pain, vomiting, and abdominal discomfort.
The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India, commenced the National Viral Hepatitis Control Program on 2018's World Hepatitis Day. It is a comprehensive project in India for the prevention and control of viral hepatitis, intending to achieve WHO's goal of preventing and combating viral hepatitis.
The type of virus that causes hepatitis influences the severity and duration of the condition. In distinct ways, the six hepatitis viruses infect the liver and are contagious:
Hepatitis A virus (HAV) is often transmitted by consuming meals contaminated with feces from an infected individual. Sexual contact with an infected person can potentially transmit the virus. It's the least dangerous virus because it nearly always cures on its own. It does not cause long-term liver dysfunction. Nonetheless, around 20% of those infected with hepatitis A become ill enough to require hospitalization.
Hepatitis B virus (HBV) primarily spreads by contact with infected or tainted blood (often through needles), sperm, vaginal fluids, or saliva. Because of intravenous drug use and multiple sex partners, the incidence is rising among unvaccinated middle-aged individuals. This type of Hepatitis virus can also be passed from mothers to their newborn children during or shortly after birth. When someone that hasn't had the HBV Infection vaccination comes into contact with HBV patients, it will take some time before they exhibit signs or indicators of the disease.
There are three stages of Hepatitis:
1. Acute Hepatitis:
The patient may suffer symptoms comparable to moderate flu during the acute, or first, phase of hepatitis infection. Although the initial phase is generally not serious, persistent infection and serious liver problems can develop over time. It might take years for them to manifest. Hepatitis B infection is generally acute.
2. Fulminant hepatitis:
Fulminant hepatitis is an uncommon syndrome characterized by widespread deterioration of the hepatic parenchyma and a reduction in liver size (acute atrophy) caused by hepatitis virus infection. This results in hepatic coma.
3. Chronic Hepatitis:
Chronic hepatitis C is a long-term illness with the hepatitis C virus. For many years, chronic hepatitis C stays as a "silent disease". Chronic hepatitis is much more worrisome, with the possibility of cirrhosis or liver cancer progressing.
One can reduce the risk of hepatitis infection by following some basic precautions:
To diagnose hepatitis, doctors mostly employ blood tests for Hepatitis and a medical examination. This covers your own and your family's medical records. Jaundice, or a yellow tinge to the skin and whites of the eyes, is the most obvious indication of hepatitis. This is because your blood and tissues have higher quantities of bilirubin. Untreated or mismanaged hepatitis can have significant and deadly consequences. By getting diagnosed on time and following the treatment plan, you can help reduce your chance of serious complications.
If your doctor physician believes you have hepatitis, they will perform the following blood tests
Liver function tests (liver panel): are used to determine signs of liver inflammation and damage.
Complete blood count: is performed to assess overall blood health.
Virology tests: are used to identify the exact type of viral hepatitis.
Hepatitis has many genotypes, as previously established. Different antiretroviral medicines are approved and advised for different genes of Hepatitis based on clinical trial efficacy. Hepatitis is a terrifying word for anybody. Only a hepatitis check-up can tell your doctor the severity and begin the treatment before it's too late. The most economical Hepatitis health checkup packages are only a step away from you at My Health Meter medical and diagnostic centre. On this World Hepatitis Day 2022, we hope to bring hepatitis care closer to you by offering accurate and error-free Hepatitis diagnoses, so that together we can fight this lethal disease for our future generations.