Definition and types of viral hepatitis

Hepatitis, or hepatitis, is an inflammation of the liver in which liver cells are damaged and the body's functioning is affected in varying degrees. The disease may have a short-or long-term (possibly life) cycle, and therefore we talk about theacute hepatitisandChronic hepatitis.

Hepatitis can have many different reasons (see article hepatitis), a so-called infectious hepatitis caused byHepatitis virus, Which is specific viruses that cause both acute and chronic hepatitis. This type of virus attacks the liver and found in different versions: Hepatitis viruses A, B, C, D, E and G. It is most often children or young adults who become infected, and the pathway and processes vary for the different types of virus.

In Denmark reported about 200 new cases of viral hepatitis annually. Many more are probably infected and healthy again, without knowing that it was the hepatitis error.

Symptoms of infectious hepatitis

The symptoms of viral hepatitis are the same, regardless of type. However, some completely or almost completely asymptomatic. This is often for chronic hepatitis, but is also seen, especially in children, by acute hepatitis. Sometimes ranging from infection to symptoms occur (incubation period) varies for different types of hepatitis virus. When symptoms occur, these are the following:

First occurs:

  • Loss of appetite, vomiting and abdominal pain (especially under the right edge rib).

  • Decreased energy, fatigue.

  • Flu-like symptoms such as fever, joint pain and headache.

  • Itching.

After a few days feel there is typically better, but is not about to be healthy, and there is:

  • Jaundice.

  • Light (kitfarvet) stools (reason: see jaundice).

  • Dark (porter colored) urine (reason: see jaundice).

Infectious Roads and incubation period of infectious hepatitis

Hepatitis A virus:
Available in large quantities in an infected person's stool. Spill spreading therefore at a so-calledfæko-oral route. That is to say by ingestion of stool residue of infected personsthrough contaminated food or drink. The disease is prevalent in poor countries with poor hygiene. Most Danish patients infected in foreign travel or of infected family members. The incubation period ranges from a few weeks to some. a half months.

Hepatitis B virus:
Spillfrom blood for bloodorSexually-transmitted. This means that risk is injecting drug users who share needles, and healthcare workers who risk bury themselves in infected needles. Also unclean needles in tattooing, piercing or acupuncture can transmit infection. Another risk factor is unprotected sex with many different partners, and especially gay men with many sexual partners are vulnerable. Blood products for transfusions is now in Denmark screened for hepatitis B virus infection and thus seems extremely rare.
Hepatitis B virus is widespread throughout the world, but especially in Africa and Southeast Asia, where infection from mother to child is a frequent cause. The incubation period is quite long, 1 to 6 months.

Hepatitis C virus:
Spill fromblood for blood,but not as easy as hepatitis B. Up to 70% of Danish injecting drug users are infected with hepatitis C virus. Donated blood screened for hepatitis C virus, so it is very unlikely that the disease caused by a blood transfusion. The incubation period is a few weeks.

Hepatitis C virus:
Spill like B and C fromblood for blood, But can only attack people already infected with hepatitis B virus. Infection occurs most frequently among IDUs.

Hepatitis E virus:
Spill as Type Afæko-oral, That is through food and drink contaminated with stool particles. It can be seen in small epidemics (including India), but is rare in Denmark. The incubation period is around. one month.

Hepatitis G virus:
Is common among injecting drug users in Denmark, but it is unclear whether this type of virus can actually cause liver disease.

Common to all types of viruses is that they are clearly most contagious in the beginning, before developing jaundice (see symptoms above). Then they quickly become very contagious.

Precautions and diagnosis

Hepatitis can be prevented, see the section on this below. If signs of hepatitis should immediately seek medical attention as the disease can be serious. It is important to refrain from drinking alcohol, and they should not take any medicine without consulting with a doctor about it. You have to take it calmly and not exercise while you are sick.

Often you will be hospitalized at a hospital, and the diagnosis is made using sick history, symptoms, specific blood tests and possibly a tissue (biopsy) from the liver. Both blood samples and biopsy can also say something about the severity of the disease.

Treatment of infectious hepatitis

Treatment of infectious hepatitis is a specialized task and will depend most on whether it is acute or chronic hepatitis (see the progress of each type below).

Some acute process moving by itself and requires no treatment. It merely here to observe and ensure proper nutrition and alcohol abstinence. This is the course of acute hepatitis A, B, D and E. They can vaccinate for hepatitis A, which also has power when it is made soon after it has been exposed to infection. Hepatitis C should be treated in the acute phase in order to counteract the high risk of developing chronic disease (see the progress and complications below). If, in the worst f

Chronic hepatitis treated with special medication, which to some extent prevent any virus-types to share in liver cells.

There are effective vaccines against hepatitis A and B, see more under the section on prevention below.

Select and complications

As mentioned hepatitis can be acute or chronic, the latter of which is longer than 6 months. A chronic hepatitis can also emerge as an episode of acute illness and since sober and evolve slowly. Chronic hepatitis can lead to the development of cirrhosis and give an increased risk of developing liver cancer.

Generally speaking, to acute hepatitis rarely lasts more than 2-3 months and usually ends up with that will be cured. However, there is a risk that it may develop into chronic hepatitis or directly lead to liver failure, which is fatal in 50% of cases. The different types of virus have different typical course and complications:

Hepatitis A virus:
Does acute hepatitis, whichneverdevelop into chronic illness. Small children have mild illness and almost never develop jaundice. The risk of liver failure is very small (about 1 in 1,000), and it will be completely cured after one to two months, after which they are immune to disease for life. One can however be Tired of up to six months after an acute hepatitis A virus infection.

Hepatitis B virus:
Often gives no acute symptoms, but 10-15 develops chronic infection, which can be anything from harmless (healthy infection bears) to very aggressive. One in five with chronic infection developscirrhosisin the course of 5-15 years and 10-20% developliver cancer. Nine out of ten children infected by their mothers at birth, have chronic infection with hepatitis B virus.

Hepatitis C virus:
Very few have acute symptoms of jaundice, but up to 80% have chronic hepatitis. A fifth of these sheepcirrhosisafter many years, which in addition gives an increased risk ofliver cancer.

Hepatitis C virus:
Spill m



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