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What Is Hepatitis A?


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What Is Hepatitis A?

Hepatitis means inflammation of the liver. Hepatitis A is a viral liver infection spread by the faecal-oral route. This means it is most commonly spread from person to person by ingesting contaminated food or water. While it is uncommon in England, it is widespread in developing countries. Typically in areas of more wealth, where access to clean water and better hygiene is possible, incidents of Hepatitis A are less. Hepatitis A virus is carried in the bloodstream to the liver causing hepatitis. It usually causes an unpleasant illness with most people making a full recovery.

Its symptoms are:-

• low grade fever – usually no higher than 39.5C (103.1F)

• joint pain

• feeling and being sick

After the liver becomes infected symptoms can include:-

• yellowing of the skin and eyes (jaundice)

• passing very dark coloured urine and

• pale faeces

• abdominal pain

• itchy skin

The symptoms will usually clear up within two months but can last up to 6 months. Watch our follow up video to find out how do you get Hepatitis A?

Sources:-

http://www.patient.co.uk/health/hepatitis-a, Accessed June 27th 3013.

http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/hepatitis-a/Pages/Introduction.aspx, Accessed June 27th 3013.

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Published July 2013

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