- Hepatitis B - a dangerous inflammation of the liver
Hepatitis B - is a serious infection of the liver caused by hepatitis B. Some people HBV becomes chronic, and can lead to liver failure, cancer or liver cirrhosis - disturbance which causes the formation of scar tissue on the liver.
Most people infected with hepatitis B recover completely. The likelihood of developing chronic hepatitis B is particularly high in infants and preschool children. Medicines for Hepatitis B does not exist, but the vaccine can prevent the disease. People who are already infected, you should take precautions to avoid infecting other people.
Signs and symptoms of hepatitis B usually appear within three months after infection. The main symptoms:
- Abdominal pain;
- Dark-colored urine;
- Joint pain;
- Lack of appetite;
- Nausea and vomiting;
- Weakness and fatigue;
- Yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes (jaundice).
Most children and some adults, there are no symptoms of hepatitis.
When any of the above symptoms, contact your doctor. Immediately contact your doctor if you think you may have been infected with hepatitis B (for example, if you were having sex with an infected partner). Prophylactic treatment may reduce the risk of infection in the event that the treatment started within 24 hours after contact with the virus of hepatitis B.
Hepatitis B virus is transmitted from person to person through blood, semen or other body fluids. Once in the liver, it penetrates into its cells, and begins to proliferate. It causes inflammation of the liver and symptoms of hepatitis B.
The most common ways to spread hepatitis B:
- Sexual contact. You can get hepatitis B through sexual contact with an infected partner, if his or her blood, saliva, semen or vaginal secretions enter your body.
- Injection. Hepatitis B virus is easily transmitted through needles and syringes have been in contact with infected blood.
- Random injections and / or blood entering into the open wound. Hepatitis B can be infected health care workers and other people who regularly come into contact with human blood.
- Childbirth. Hepatitis B virus can be passed from mother to child during childbirth.
What are the symptoms of hepatitis B
The incubation period of hepatitis B can last from 45 to 120 days, its average duration is 60-90 days. Incubation period depends on how much virus, get into the way in which contamination has occurred, as well as the general state of health.
One of the characteristic signs of acute hepatitis B is a sharp increase of serum aminotransferases. Raising can be very different: some patients activity increased 3-10 times, while others - 100 or more times. However, even a very significant increase of aminotransferase activity is not necessarily associated with a poor prognosis. After the end of the incubation period, symptoms such hepatitis B as fatigue, lack of appetite, abdominal discomfort, nausea, vomiting. Approximately 10 days after the first symptoms begin to manifest such symptoms as dark urine, unusual light color stools; skin, mucous membranes, whites of the eyes become yellow. Jaundice occurs when bilirubin levels greater than 20-40 mg / l; it is accompanied by an increase in liver and spleen.
After 4-12 weeks, 95% of adult patients, HBV passes by itself, because the body begins to produce protective antibodies (anti-HBs). In most cases, patients with acute hepatitis B do not require any special treatment or bed rest.
Approximately 5% of adult patients develop chronic viral hepatitis
Hepatitis - the scourge of our time
B. Signs that hepatitis B developed into a chronic form, is elevated aminotransferase levels and the presence of HBsAg, observed after six months or more after the patient has gone above signs of hepatitis
Symptoms of hepatitis - are not always clear
B. For quite a long time, the disease may be asymptomatic, but it does not mean that it is harmless. In contrast, 20% of cases of chronic hepatitis B leads to liver cirrhosis. In this disorder liver cells die and are gradually replaced by fibrous tissue, which leads to the formation of knots. The internal structure of the liver are destroyed, resulting in impeded blood flow, liver function and worse. Such damage caused by persistent immune responses, which are stimulated by the presence of the virus.
Acute and chronic hepatitis B
Acute hepatitis lasts less than six months. Normally, the immune system is able to cope with the virus that allows you to fully recover within a few months. Most adults infected with hepatitis B develop acute hepatitis
Acute hepatitis - always seriously
Chronic hepatitis B lasts six months or more. When the immune system can not fight the virus, hepatitis becomes chronic and leads to such abuses as cirrhosis and liver cancer. Chronic hepatitis B develops in most children infected with the virus between the ages of one and five years. Chronic infection may remain unnoticed for decades, as long as a person does not develop serious liver disease.
The following factors increase the risk of contracting hepatitis B:
- Unprotected sexual intercourse with more than one partner;
- The presence of diseases, sexually transmitted diseases such as gonorrhea
Gonorrhea - self-ruled
- Homosexual sex among men;
- The injection of intravenous drugs with the use of one syringe for a few people;
- Accommodation in the same house with someone who has been diagnosed with chronic hepatitis B;
- The need to regularly go on dialysis;
- Travel to areas with a high incidence of hepatitis B, such as Africa, Central and South-East Asia and Eastern Europe.
- Cirrhosis of the liver. Hepatitis B can cause inflammation which results in extensive formation of scar tissue on the liver. The scar tissue disrupts the liver.
- Liver cancer. The risk of developing liver cancer is particularly high in people with chronic hepatitis B.
- Liver failure. This leads to impaired liver function; in the worst cases to save the life of the patient may need a liver transplant.
- Kidney problems. Hepatitis B may eventually lead to kidney failure.
- Infection with hepatitis D. Each person infected with hepatitis B are at risk of infection with hepatitis D. Infection of both these viruses increases the likelihood of developing complications of hepatitis.