Hippocrates said "all diseases begin in the gut", but we believe that all health begins in the gut, too.

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What is Hepatitis B & C?

Both hepatitis B and C are infections of the liver causing inflammation, pain, redness, and swelling. Both these are caused by separate viruses which spread through an infected person’s blood or body fluids. It can cause scarring of the organ, liver failure, and cancer. It can be fatal if it isn’t treated.

Possible Causes: 

Hepatitis means inflammation of the liver. Hepatitis types are identified by the virus that’s causing it. Hepatitis B is caused by the hepatitis B virus while hepatitis C is caused by the C virus. Symptoms may not show up until after one to six months of catching the virus.

Risk Factors:

  • Both hepatitis B and C virus is spread through blood, saliva, semen, or vaginal secretions. So, you can get it if you have unprotected sexual relationship with someone who has it.
  • Poor sanitation and poor hygiene increase the risk.
  • Sharing syringes contaminated with infected blood increases the risk of hepatitis transmission.
  • During childbirth, mothers suffering from hepatitis B can pass it on to their babies.

Signs & Symptoms:

Hepatitis B and C symptoms could manifest as any of the following:

  • Jaundice and fever.
  • Fatigue that persists for long periods.
  • Loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting and joint pain.
  • Swelling in the legs or belly. You may also bleed and bruise more easily.
  • In some people, hepatitis C also causes an autoimmune condition called sicca syndrome which results in swelling, sores, and white lacy patches in your mouth
  • Build-up of bilirubin turns your eyes, skin, urine and faeces yellow.
  • When bile acids are low, your intestines can’t absorb vital nutrients required by your body.
  • Higher risk of diabetes.

Diagnosis:

Get the right diagnosis of hepatitis at Medcare’s Gastroenterology Cclinic. Here our specialist will conduct a blood test to determine if there is any swelling in your liver. If you have hepatitis B symptoms and if your liver enzymes are high, further tests will be recommended.

If your disease becomes chronic, we may ask you to do an ultrasound test or take a tissue sample from your liver, called a biopsy. This will enable the gastroenterologist to ascertain how severe your condition is. A simple blood test is needed to diagnose hepatitis C.

Treatment Options:

Hepatitis B treatment – If you commence your treatment in the early stages, the chances of recovery are good. Our gastroenterologist will give you a vaccine and a shot of hepatitis B immune globulin, to help fight the infection.

Hepatitis C treatment – Antivirals are used for a period of time depending on the different stage of the disease.

FAQs: الأسئلة الشائعة:
  • Can vaccination prevent hepatitis B and C?

    A: A safe and effective vaccine is available for hepatitis B, but there is none for hepatitis C. The hepatitis B vaccine is a series of three injections. The first one is given to infants soon after birth, but adults can also take this vaccination course to protect themselves from hepatitis B.

  • Do hepatitis B and hepatitis C conditions increase the risk of getting cirrhosis of the liver?

    A: Yes, there is a correlation and patients who have chronic hepatitis B or hepatitis C infections are at a higher risk of getting cirrhosis of the liver in the future.

  • I’m being treated for hepatitis B, does this mean I should cut fats out of my diet completely?

    A: Fatty and fried foods are hard for the liver to digest, and often cause pain to patients suffering from chronic hepatitis infections. Meats with high fat content can also be harmful to hepatitis patients. Speak to a qualified dietician to understand which cooking oils and how much you can safely consume.

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