Diagnosis & treatment
The information provided is not a substitute for any medical advice. ALWAYS consult with your doctor for more information.
How is hepatitis B diagnosed?
If you have come in contact with a person with hepatitis B, or traveled from a place where the disease is common, it is a good idea to contact your doctor and have yourself tested. Doctors will ask the patient to undergo a series of blood tests to diagnose hepatitis B.
How is hepatitis B treated?
Treatment is not usually required for acute hepatitis B. In most cases, people are able to fight off the virus on their own. However, getting enough rest and staying well-hydrated is important for all stages of recovery.
Antiviral medications are given to those diagnosed with chronic hepatitis B infection. These medications will help the body fight the virus. They also help prevent further damage and complications in the liver.
Doctors may recommend a liver transplant if the damage done to the liver is too severe. The procedure will involve removing the patient’s liver, and replacing it with a donor’s liver. Most livers used for transplants are from deceased donors.
Lifestyle changes & home remedies
What are some lifestyle changes or home remedies that can help me manage hepatitis B?
If you have any questions, consult with your doctor to better understand the best solution for you.
Prevention is always better than seeking treatment. The best prevention for hepatitis B is by getting vaccinated. The vaccine is completely safe, and relatively affordable.
The hepatitis B vaccine consists of three to four shots given over six months. The vaccine is recommended for:
- Children and adults who were not vaccinated at birth
- Pregnant women
- Adults receiving treatment for a sexually transmitted infections
- Healthcare workers
- People living with someone who has hepatitis B
- People living with HIV
- Men who have sex with men
- People with multiple sexual partners
- People who travel to places with high cases of hepatitis B
It is encouraged that you get vaccinated for hepatitis B.
There are other precautionary measures that you can do to avoid HBV. These include:
Knowing your sexual partner’s HBV status
Do not engage in unprotected sex unless you are absolutely sure that they do not have HBV or any other sexually transmitted infection. When in doubt, use barrier protection such as a condom.
Use only one condom for every round
The proper use of condoms requires you to use a new one after every round of sex. Remember that condoms only reduce your risk of acquiring HBV. They do not completely eliminate the risk.
Stop using illicit drugs
Seek professional help if you are struggling to quit drugs. If you are unable to, make sure your needles are sterile each time you use them. Never share needles.
Be cautious when choosing body piercing and tattoo shops
Look for reputable shops if you are planning to get a body piercing or tattoo. Ask about their cleaning process, and make sure their needles and equipment are sterile.
Get vaccinated before traveling
Ask your doctor about the hepatitis B vaccine if you plan to travel to countries where cases HBV cases are high. You will need at least six months to complete the series of shots. Make sure you are completely vaccinated before traveling.
Hepatitis B infection is a serious and preventable disease. Knowing the signs and symptoms of hepatitis B and having access to proper health services can ensure your recovery.
This infection attacks one of the body’s most vital organs, the liver. It can be life-threatening when untreated. Early detection and treatment is the best way to prevent the infection from progressing. This is why it is important to know the signs and symptoms of hepatitis B.
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