Is Hepatitis A a Virus?

May 25, 2022

Hepatitis is often the outcome of a virus. In this condition, the liver typically swells from inflammation and damage. As a result, the liver ceases to function normally. Generally, hepatitis develops in a person due to excessive alcohol consumption, certain medical complexities, and toxins.

There are three kinds of liver infections - Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, and Hepatitis C. AFC Urgent Care Hilldale is able to provide certain vaccinations against contagious illnesses. Get vaccinated today at our walk-in center, with no appointment necessary.

 

What is Hepatitis A?

Hepatitis A is a short-term virus that infects the liver and is highly contagious. People who develop this liver infection can remain sick for a few weeks to a couple of months. However, the positive aspect is that patients with hepatitis A liver infection usually recover completely with time.

Moreover, medical experts and research tell us that the effects of hepatitis A on the liver are not permanent. Patients usually do not suffer permanent liver damage. However, it is very rare to see hepatitis A leading to liver failure and ultimately death in patients.

People who are vulnerable to the worst outcomes of hepatitis A are usually older patients or those suffering from other serious medical problems. This could include problems like chronic diseases of the liver even before developing hepatitis A.

 

Symptoms

The symptoms of hepatitis A are usually more evident in adults than children. In fact, it is even possible for certain hepatitis A patients to not experience any symptoms at all. In cases where symptoms do develop, one will not experience them until the second or the seventh week of infection.

Symptoms may also go away in less than two months, while certain patients can remain sick for up to six months.

Symptoms include:

  • Feeling fatigued constantly
  • Joint pain
  • Diarrhea
  • Light-colored stools or dark urine
  • Fever
  • Stomach pain
  • Vomiting
  • Frequent unsettled stomach
  • Decreasing appetite
  • Yellowing eyes or skin

 

Diagnosing Hepatitis A

In most cases, a doctor typically diagnoses a hepatitis A infection by asking about the symptoms of patients and requesting blood tests. The results of the blood tests are the surest way to determine whether a patient has developed the virus that leads to hepatitis A.

 

Prevention and Vaccination

Hepatitis is no longer a rare medical condition, and many people around the world suffer from it. Thankfully, medical advancements have put precautionary measures in place, such as the hepatitis A vaccine.

People can take more than a single hepatitis A vaccine shot for maximum protection against the infection. Moreover, people should maintain good hygiene practices. They should wash their hands thoroughly after using the loo, before and after meals, after changing diapers, and similar activities.

 

Final Thoughts

Hepatitis A is a treatable liver infection. However, with timely vaccination and preventive measures, one can easily prevent the spread of this liver problem.

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