What Is The Difference Between Hepatitis A B And C
Hepatitis is the combination of two words, Hepa or Hepatic means related to the Liver, and itis means infection. There are five main strains of hepatitis, namely, A, B, C, D, and E, with different etiologies. While some are caused by ingestion of contaminated food, some are caused by blood-to-blood or body fluids contact. According to WHO, 354 million people globally live with a hepatitis B or C infection. In the WHO European Region, an estimated 13.3 million people live with chronic hepatitis B and an estimated 15 million people with hepatitis C.
Adding to the alarming stats, as per the CDC , since the outbreaks were first identified in 2016, 37 states have publicly reported 44,241 cases, 27,029 hospitalizations, and 420 deaths as of May 6, 2022.
Even though the prevalence of Hepatitis is high, not many people know about the difference in the strains of Hepatitis viruses and their transmission route. Here, we have highlighted the main differences in hepatitis A, B, and C and how is it caused?
LetsLets begin by talking about,
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Getting Tested Is The Only Way To Know If You Have Hepatitis C
A blood test called a hepatitis C antibody test can tell if you have been infected with the hepatitis C viruseither recently or in the past. If you have a positive antibody test, another blood test is needed to tell if you are still infected or if you were infected in the past and cleared the virus on your own.
- Are 18 years of age and older
- Currently inject drugs
- Have ever injected drugs, even if it was just once or many years ago
- Have abnormal liver tests or liver disease
- Are on hemodialysis
How Can You Prevent Hepatitis B And Hepatitis C
Hepatitis B: Vaccination is the best way to prevent all of the ways that hepatitis B is transmitted. People with HIV who do not have active HBV infection should be vaccinated against it. In addition to the 3-dose series of hepatitis B vaccine given over 6 months, as of 2017, there is a 2-dose series given over 1 month.
Hepatitis C: No vaccine exists for HCV and no effective pre- or postexposure prophylaxis is available. The best way to prevent hepatitis C infection is to never inject drugs or to stop injecting drugs by getting into and staying in drug treatment. If you continue injecting drugs, always use new, sterile needles or syringes, and never reuse or share needles or syringes, water, or other drug preparation equipment.
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What Is Hepatitis D
Hepatitis D, also referred to as the delta hepatitis, is an infection caused by the hepatitis D virus. Delta hepatitis is an incomplete virus that depends on the hepatitis B virus to replicate and spread. This occurs only in people affected by the hepatitis B virus. To prevent delta hepatitis, you need to take the hepatitis B vaccine.
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How Does It Affect The Body
The incubation period for hepatitis B can range from . However, not everyone who has acute hepatitis B will experience symptoms.
About 95 percent of adults completely recover from hepatitis B. However, hepatitis B can also become chronic.
The risk of chronic hepatitis B is greatest in those who were exposed to HBV as young children. Many people with chronic hepatitis B dont have symptoms until significant liver damage has occurred.
In some people whove had hepatitis B, the virus can reactivate later on. When this happens, symptoms and liver damage may occur. People with a weakened immune system and those being treated for hepatitis C are at a higher risk for HBV reactivation.
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Is There A Possibility Of Coinfection
Both hepatitis B and C can be present at the same time. Hepatitis C may become more dominant, reducing hepatitis B levels in the bloodstream to low or undetectable levels.
Prior to starting hepatitis C treatment, people should have their blood tested for hepatitis B using the three-part blood test . According to the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases treatment guidelines, people who are currently infected with hepatitis B or who have recovered from a previous infection should be managed carefully to avoid dangerous elevations in liver enzymes that can lead to liver failure.
Hcv Viral Load Determination
HCV viral load was quantified by in-house real-time PCR targeting the conserved 5 UTR region. Briefly, the 25 l reaction mix contained Taqman Fast Advanced master mix , 250 nM Taqman FAM/TAMRA probe HCVQ1TAQ 5-FAM-CCCTCCCGGGAGAGCCATAGTGGTC-TAMRA-3, 900 nM each of in-house designed forward HCVQ1F 5-AGCGTCTAGCCATGGCGT-3 and reverse HCVQ1R 5-ATTCCGGTGTACTCACCGGT-3 primers, and 2 l each of known HCV-negative, HCV-positive sera, PCR grade water or HCV cDNA as template.
Complementary DNA was amplified in the Bio-Rad CFX96 real-time system using the following cycling setting: an initial cycle at 50 °C for 2 min and 95 °C for 20 s followed by 40 cycles at 95 °C for 3 s and 60 °C for 30 s. Acrometrix HCV High Control was included as a positive control. The real-time PCR was performed in duplicate. Serial dilutions of the plasmid DNA encoding full-length HCV genotype 1a genome were used in triplicate to generate the standard curve. The dynamic range of HCV real-time PCR was estimated to be 1.86×1031.86×1012 IU/ml.
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What Are The Treatments For Hepatitis
Treatment for hepatitis depends on which type you have and whether it is acute or chronic. Acute viral hepatitis often goes away on its own. To feel better, you may just need to rest and get enough fluids. But in some cases, it may be more serious. You might even need treatment in a hospital.
There are different medicines to treat the different chronic types of hepatitis. Possible other treatments may include surgery and other medical procedures. People who have alcoholic hepatitis need to stop drinking. If your chronic hepatitis leads to liver failure or liver cancer, you may need a liver transplant.
Hepatitis B: How Does It Spread
You can get it through contact with the blood or body fluids of an infected person. In the U.S., it’s most often spread through unprotected sex. It’s also possible to get hepatitis B by sharing an infected person’s needles, razors, or toothbrush. And an infected mother can pass the virus to their baby during childbirth. Hepatitis B is not spread by hugging, sharing food, or coughing.
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Passing On Hepatitis C
Hepatitis C is rarely passed on during sex like hepatitis A and B are, but is usually spread through blood-to-blood contact, which can include sharing needles.
There is no immunity to hepatitis C, and it is possible to get it again, even if previous infections have cleared. If left untreated, hepatitis C can be fatal. Hepatitis C can also be chronic, meaning it leaves long-term effects. In very serious cases, it can lead to liver failure or liver cancer.
If you have concerns about possible hepatitis, you should consult your GP or a sexual health professional.
You can also find advice below, with websites linking to support groups in various areas:
How Are Hepatitis A B And C Different
There are approximately 400 million people in the world who have been diagnosed with one form of hepatitis.
About 1.4 million people die from this disease annually, and what is most surprising is the fact that experts estimate that as many as 95% of people who have hepatitis do not know about this disease.
Left untreated, hepatitis, in one form or another, can cause permanent liver damage. We must be aware that patients with hepatitis usually have mild or no symptoms at all.
- People with elevated ALT levels
- Infants born to HBV-infected mothers
CDC recommends hepatitis C testing for:
- All adults aged 18 years and older
- All pregnant women during each pregnancy
- About 24,900 new infections each year
- About 22,600 new infections in 2018
- Estimated 862,000 people living with hepatitis B
- About 50,300 new infections in 2018
- Estimated 2.4 million people living with hepatitis C
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Are Hepatitis B And C Preventable
Hepatitis B is a vaccine-preventable disease.
There is a three-shot vaccination series that is very effective in protecting people against the virus if theyre exposed. In the United States, all newborns are vaccinated for hepatitis B and all pregnant women are screened for hepatitis B during pregnancy. This way, mothers infected with hepatitis B can take protective steps to decrease the risk of transmission of the virus to the child.
There is no vaccine for hepatitis C.
Hcv Seroprevalence And Rna
The HCV seroprevalence in the study was 17% . Of the 93 anti-HCV positive patients, 2 were HBsAg-positive, HBV/HCV co-infected. The remaining 91 HBsAg-negative samples of which 8 were found to be HBV DNA-positive and therefore hepatitis C with occult HBV infection . Amplification of the 5 UTR and the NS5B region was performed on 93 anti-HCV-positive sera. A total of 62/93 samples were positive in the 5UTR region and 42 in the NS5B region, with only 30.1% of the samples being positive in both regions. The HCV RNA-positive viremic rate was 12.6% , PCR-positive in one or both regions.
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How Do You Get Hepatitis C
Hepatitis C can be contracted only through direct blood contact. In the U.S., the primary mode of transmission is blood exposure through sharing needles. Mother-to-child transmission is about 5 percent of cases. Hepatitis C infection might also be a risk for people who received a blood transfusion or an organ transplant before 1992, when widespread testing of the blood supply for hepatitis C began.
If I Have Hepatitis How Can I Avoid Giving It To Someone Else
If you have hepatitis B and C, you need to find ways to keep others from making contact with your blood. Follow these tips:
- Cover your cuts or blisters.
- Carefully throw away used bandages, tissues, tampons, and sanitary napkins.
- Donât share your razor, nail clippers, or toothbrush.
- If your blood gets on objects, clean them with household bleach and water.
- Donât breastfeed if your nipples are cracked or bleeding.
- Donât donate blood, organs, or sperm.
- If you inject drugs, donât share needles or other equipment.
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The A B Cs Of Hepatitis
The hepatitis A virus causes acute inflammation of the liver that almost always gets better on its own, although it can be more serious if you get it when you are older or if you already have liver disease. It is easily spread from person to person, in food and water, and can infect many people at once. For example, if a food handler at a restaurant is infected with hepatitis A, those who eat food prepared by that handler may be infected. Hepatitis A can be prevented by getting vaccinated.
The hepatitis B virus can be both acute and chronic and is spread through blood or other body fluids in various ways. Hepatitis B is very common in Asia and Africa and those who were born or lived in these areas should be checked for hepatitis B. Like hepatitis A, a vaccine is available to prevent HBV infection as long as you have not been previously exposed. Although chronic HBV cannot be cured, there are oral medications available to treat and control the virus.
The hepatitis C virus is almost always chronic and spreads mostly by direct blood to blood contact. Although hepatitis A and B can be prevented by vaccination, hepatitis C cannot. However, there are currently oral medications available that are able to cure Hepatitis C in 95% of all cases regardless of prior treatment history.
Appropriate Uses Of The Hcv Rna Test
There are 4 major reasons that HCV RNA tests are used:
More rarely, HCV RNA is used when either very acute HCV infection is suspected or a false HCV Ab is suspected.
It would not be appropriate to repeatedly order HCV RNA viral load screening for a patient who is not on or was recently on HCV treatment, or to use the HCV viral load to determine the severity of the patient’s infection or the patient’s risk of developing significant liver disease.
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Knowing Your Risk For Chronic Hepatitis C
Because chronic hepatitis may have no symptoms, it is important to know your risk for chronic hepatitis C virus . Risk factors include:
- Those who had a transfusion of blood or blood products before 1992 .
- Those born between the years of 1945-1965.
- Those who have or are experimenting with intravenous drugs.
- Those who have snorted or are snorting cocaine.
- Those who have gotten tattoos with a non-sterile needle.
- Those who have had unprotected multiple sexual partners.
- Those with HIV.
- Children born to mothers with HCV infection.
Although these are the most common ways to acquire Hepatitis C, there are other risk factors that can lead to infection. Thus, in 2020 the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention updated its screening guidelines to recommend all adults 18 years or older get screened at least once in their lifetime for HCV.
Who Is At Risk
Anyone who has not been vaccinated or previously infected can get infected with the hepatitis A virus. In areas where the virus is widespread , most hepatitis A infections occur during early childhood. Risk factors include:
- poor sanitation
- living in a household with an infected person
- being a sexual partner of someone with acute hepatitis A infection
- use of recreational drugs
- travelling to areas of high endemicity without being immunized.
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Study Design Recruitment And Hbv/hcv Prevalence
A prospective multi-centre cross-sectional hospital-based study was designed and conducted between December 2014 and January 2016. The power and sample size calculation was estimated using prevalence of ESRD in Sudan , known method with a 95% confidence interval . In total, 541 haemodialysis patients were recruited from eight haemodialysis units in Khartoum, including Soba, Salma, Academy Hospital, Elturki, Ibn Sina, Tropical Hospital, Alnaw, and Police hospital. We included only individuals who were 18 years of age or older at the time data were collected. Information sheets and research concepts were given to research participants upon recruitment sessions. Informed consent for participation was signed and collected. Baseline demographic data and clinical profiles were recorded for all participants by study investigators. Socio-demographic data were obtained and recorded for all participants through a questionnaire including their age, gender, occupation, marital status, original and current residence areas. Clinical profiles documented included duration of dialysis in years, number of dialysis units attended, Hepatitis B Virus vaccination and date, doses of HBV vaccination received, history of jaundice, history of dental procedure, intravenous drug usage, blood transfusions, frequency of blood transfusion, and diagnosis of chronic HCV.
How Long Does It Last
Hepatitis A can last from a few weeks to several months.
Hepatitis B can range from a mild illness, lasting a few weeks, to a serious, life-long condition. More than 90% of unimmunized infants who get infected develop a chronic infection, but 6%10% of older children and adults who get infected develop chronic hepatitis B.
Hepatitis C can range from a mild illness, lasting a few weeks, to a serious, life-long infection. Most people who get infected with the hepatitis C virus develop chronic hepatitis C.
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Symptoms Of Hepatitis B
Govind explains that a lot of people who contract hepatitis B do not notice any symptoms, or the symptoms can be mild and, therefore, easy to miss.
But, after weeks or months, hepatitis B can lead to:
These symptoms can also last for several weeks and take months to recover from, but 95% of adults do recover fully from hepatitis B and symptoms tend to be mild1.
What Are The Symptoms Of Hepatitis B And C
In most patients, hepatitis B develops slowly over the course of several decades, and thus most patients have no symptoms. People who have advanced liver disease such as cirrhosis of the liver may experience complications and symptoms that reflect liver failure. Other symptoms include:
- A buildup of fluid within the abdominal cavity
- Confusion and tremors , which are complications due to the inability of the liver to filter out toxins that are normally cleaned out by a healthy liver
- Vomiting of blood, or blood within the stool . This is a complication in which enlarged veins within the esophagus or stomach bleed as a consequence of increased pressure around the diseased liver.
Most patients with chronic hepatitis C infection report no symptoms. But some patients may have very nonspecific symptoms related to fatigue and discomfort on the right side of the abdomen. Often, symptoms that lead to a diagnosis of hepatitis C are noticeable only at the end stage of liver disease, when the patient has developed liver cirrhosis and liver failure.
Because hepatitis B and C typically have no specific symptoms, many people who have the viruses dont even know it.
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