HEPA stands for liver, and TITUS stands for swelling. So, hepatitis simply means swelling of the liver. Hepatitis is defined as liver inflammation caused by Hepatitis viruses and other infections as well as toxic substances such as alcohol and certain drugs.
Types of Hepatitis
There are majorly 5 kinds of hepatitis viruses, referred to as types A, B, C, D and E. Home visit doctors in Delhi can assist you in determining the type of hepatitis.
- Hepatitis A is caused by consuming contaminated food or water. It does not cause long-term liver inflammation.
- Hepatitis B can spread in a variety of ways. Infection can occur through sexual transmission by an infected person, from a mother to her newborn child during pregnancy, or by sharing a needle.
- Hepatitis C is commonly transmitted through direct contact with contaminated blood or needles used to inject illegal drugs or draw tattoos. It can also cause cirrhosis and dangerous liver scarring in severe cases.
- Hepatitis D develops only after a person has been infected with hepatitis B. It tends to aggravate the disease and is passed down from mother to child or through sexual contact.
- Hepatitis E virus (HEV) is transmitted by drinking contaminated water.
Causes of Hepatitis
The most common cause of hepatitis is a virus, but there are other causes too, such as:
- Autoimmune diseases like lupus and Crohn’s disease
- Exposure to toxins like carbon tetrachloride and arsenic
- Heavy alcohol use
- Infection with parasites, like tapeworm
- Use of certain medications, like acetaminophen
Symptoms of Hepatitis & Tests for Diagnosis
Some common symptoms of hepatitis are:
- Flu-like symptoms
- Dark urine
- Pale stool
- Abdominal pain
- Loss of appetite
- Unexplained weight loss
- Pale and yellow skin and eyes – which may be signs of jaundice
Hepatitis can be diagnosed through a physical exam and laboratory findings such as Liver Function Tests, Ultrasound, Blood Tests and Viral Antibody Testing. Sometimes, a liver biopsy can be recommended in extreme cases.
Prevention of Hepatitis
Hepatitis can sometimes heal with no significant consequence or progress to cirrhosis, i.e., liver scarring. Acute hepatitis can prolong up to six months, while chronic hepatitis lasts longer.
One can prevent hepatitis by practising good hygiene and avoiding:
- Drinking local water
- Eating raw fruit and vegetables without washing properly
- Unprotected sexual contact
- Sharing needles and razors
- Using someone else’s toothbrush
- Touching spilt blood
Treatment for Hepatitis
Hepatitis A is a mild illness that may not require treatment. In addition, if the patient has vomiting or diarrhoea, your doctor may recommend a dietary plan to help you stay hydrated and nourished.
There is no specialized treatment for acute hepatitis B. A person with chronic hepatitis B will need antiviral medications from a reliable source.
Chronic hepatitis B treatment also requires regular medical examinations and monitoring to determine whether the virus responds to treatment.
People who develop chronic hepatitis C will typically receive a combination of antiviral drug therapies. They may also require additional testing to determine the best course of treatment.
Cirrhosis or liver disease caused by chronic hepatitis C may qualify for a liver transplant.
This medication induces a nonspecific antiviral state in infected cells, which inhibits viral replication and reduces the chances of non-infected cells becoming infected. It also boosts the host’s antiviral immune responses, potentially hastening the death of virus-infected cells.
However, this medication can have serious side effects.
There are currently no specific medical therapies available from reliable sources to treat hepatitis E. Because the infection is frequently severe, it usually resolves on its own.
Medical experts advise patients suffering from this infection to get plenty of rest, eat well, drink plenty of fluids, and avoid alcohol.
How Serious is Hepatitis?
While Hepatitis A is usually acute and short-term, Hepatitis B, C and D are chronic. Hepatitis E is usually acute but can prove to be very dangerous for expecting women.
Hepatitis B and C have increased the risks of chronic liver diseases like cirrhosis and liver cancer. Hence, taking the necessary precautions and preventing the problem altogether is better. Consult home visit doctors for more detailed information to better understand the disease and its effects.
Vaccination plays a major role in preventing hepatitis and helps to negate all the complications related to the same. It is important to get your child vaccinated as per the recommendation of a specialist and protect them from the risks of hepatitis later in life. Home visit doctors in Delhi can help you with the right advice regarding vaccinations, diagnosis, treatments and prevention methods.