July 28: World observes “World Hepatitis Day”

World Hepatitis Day is being observed round the globe. The focus is to spread awareness about viral hepatitis, which kills around 1 million people every year. Millions more suffer immediate sickness or long-term ill health.

What is Hepatitis?

  • Hepatitis as the name suggests is formed from Greek word ‘Hepar’ meaning liver and ‘–itis’ meaning inflammation. It is a medical condition in which there occurs inflammation of liver cells. The complications vary with the type of infection

What are different types of Hepatitis?

  • There are 5 types of hepatitis – A, B, C, D, and E – each caused by a different hepatitis virus.

What causes Hepatitis?

  • It is mostly caused by a group of viruses called hepatitis viruses. It can also be caused by toxins like alcohol, drugs, chemicals and other infections and autoimmune diseases.

Hepatitis Type

Causing Virus

Transmission

Complications and Severity

Hepatitis A

HAV

Contaminated food and drinking water, unsafe sexual contact, fecal- oral route

swelling and inflammation in the liver, can be treated to full recovery

Hepatitis B

HBV

Contact with blood, semen or any other body fluid of infected person, unprotected sex, sharing needles and syringes, from pregnant mother to her baby or through breast feeding the baby, through bite from infected person

Serious infection and swelling of liver , may lead to liver cirrhosis or liver cancer

Hepatitis C

HCV

Same as above

Same as above

Hepatitis D

HDV

One can get the disease only if the one is already infected with Hepatitis B, transmission same as above

Swelling of liver

Hepatitis E

HEV

Infected water, oral-anal contact

Swelling to the liver, No long term damage,

Around 60% of liver cancer cases in India are caused by Hepatatis B.

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