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Hepatitis A Test London

Overview

Hepatitis A is a viral liver disease, highly contagious and caused by the hepatitis A virus. Just like hepatitis b and c viruses, this virus inflames and affects the function of your liver.

You can contract hepatitis A from contaminated food or water, or an infected person or object. Hepatitis A can be mild; requiring no treatment. Most times, infected persons can recover completely without permanent liver damage.

A good hygienic practice can protect you against this disease. Vaccines are available for prevention too.

Symptoms

Signs of hepatitis A appeara few weeks after infection. It can be asymptomatic, but if symptoms develop, it can include:

  • Intense itching and joint pain
  • Loss of appetite
  • Fatigue
  • Abdominal pain
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Jaundice (yellow discolouration of the skin and eyes)
  • Clay-coloured bowel movements

These symptoms may go from mild to severe. Sometimes, it can disappear after a few weeks.

When to seek medical attention

If you have symptoms of hepatitis A, see your doctor.Hepatitis A vaccine or an antibody (an injection of immunoglobulin)taken within 2 weeks of exposure to the virus can prevent infection.

Other conditions for receiving the vaccine is if:

  • You are close to an infected person
  • You recently have sexual contact with an infected person
  • There’s a report of hepatitis A outbreak in a restaurant you recently ate
  • You’ve travelled out to areas poorly sanitised

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if you do or do not have an STD.

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Causes

Hepatitis A is caused by a virus that inflames and affect liver cells. This inflammation affects the way your liver works and triggers other signs and symptoms of hepatitis A.

Point of infection is through consumption of contaminated food or water with the smallest amount of faecal matter.

Hepatitis A doesn’t spread through coughing or sneezing.

The virus can spread through:

  • Sexual intercourse with infected persons
  • Close contact with infected persons even if they have zero symptoms
  • Drinking contaminated water
  • Consuming food handled by hepatitis A-infected persons who do not wash their hands after using the toilet.

Risk Factors

You are more susceptible to hepatitis A when:

  • You’re HIV positive
  • You travel or work in hepatitis A infected areas
  • An infected person is living with you
  • You are a man sleeping with other men
  • You have a clotting-factor disorder like haemophilia
  • Using any type of illicit drugs
  • You are experiencing homelessness

Complications

Hepatitis A, unlike other types of viral hepatitis, does not cause long-term liver damage. It doesn’t become chronic either.

The disease rarely causes loss of liver function, especially in aged people or people suffering from chronic liver diseases.

Any acute liver failure will require a stay in the hospital for close observation and treatment. In other cases, people with acute liver failure may need a liver transplant to replace a dysfunctional liver.

How to prevent hepatitis A

Hepatitis A vaccine can prevent you from being infected with the virus. The vaccine is administered in two shots. The first shot is followed by a booster shot after six months.

The Centers for Disease Control and Preventions has recommended the hepatitis A vaccine for:

  • All children aged one year, or older children who missed out in receiving the vaccine at childhood
  • Any person one year or older who is experiencing homelessness
  • People who are living with or in direct contact with hepatitis A-infected persons
  • Men having sex with men
  • Everyone wishing to be immunised against it
  • People with chronic liver disease including hepatitis b and c
  • Anyone using any type of illegal drugs, not just intravenous ones
  • Persons who travel to OR work in parts of the world where hepatitis A is common
  • People who work in a laboratory and may come in contact with hepatitis A

Safety Precautions

Prevent infection during an outbreak by:

  • Avoiding raw or undercooked meat and fish
  • Using bottled water for drinking/brushing your teeth
  • Peeling and washing all fresh fruits and vegetables yourself
  • Avoiding all beverage drinks of unknown purity
  • Drinking boiled tap water if bottled water isn’t available

Practice good hygiene by carrying out things as basic as washing your hands often, especially after using the toilet, changing diapers, and before preparing food or eating.

It pays to be hygienic! Your general health is affected by your daily practices. Eat well-prepared meals and keep your environment sanitised always.

There’s Only One Way to Know

Getting tested is not only quick and easy, it’s the only way to know for sure
if you do or do not have an STD.

Put Your Mind at Ease Today

or call 020 7183 0649