The Ongoing Problem with Hepatitis A

Hepatitis A
Learn about Hepatitis A. Keith Syvinski / stock.xchng

Life is considered very precious and very important. In order to survive, maintaining a healthy lifestyle is imperative. Health is one aspect of our life that can affect our entire well-being if we were to become sick. If we are aware of how to maintain our health, we can be assured that we can live longer and more fruitful lives.

There are ways to maintain good health, such as having healthy and regular routines and also following the advice of health professionals and doctors.

If you pay attention to health issues and problems, you have a greater chance of living a healthy lifestyle.

However, there may come a point in our life in which our health will be compromised. It would be disturbing and saddening to find out that we are suffering from diseases or ailments. When this happens, we must take certain steps to prevent further progression of the sickness. Though there are many diseases or ailments that may attack us in moments we don’t expect, we must always be equipped to deal with them. One of the most common diseases that one may develop is hepatitis.

Hepatitis is known to be a disease of the liver, the largest organ in one’s body. When you have hepatitis, your liver becomes inflamed and swells. Viruses are the most common cause of it, closely followed by the consumption of drugs and alcohol. Hepatitis isn’t just a single disease, but it has different types: hepatitis A to E.

Hepatitis A is the most diagnosed among them.

What is Hepatitis A?

Hepatitis A is known to be an extremely contagious infection of the liver, which is triggered by the hepatitis A virus. Like the other viruses, it causes inflammation of the said organ, which hinders the ability of the liver to function properly.

This disease has noticeable symptoms such as fatigue, vomiting, nausea, discomfort or abdominal pain, bowel movements that are clay-colored, loss in appetite, fever in low-grade, dark urine, joint pain and jaundice, the yellowing of the eyes and the skin.

In many cases, signs and symptoms of the said disease may not appear or might be mistaken for common illnesses. The symptoms can usually be observed once a person consumes diminutive amounts of infected fecal matter through contamination of water and food.

Certain Problems or Complications due to Hepatitis A

It’s advisable for a person who has hepatitis to consult doctors and health professionals to prevent the problem from getting much worse. However, since sometimes signs and symptoms rarely appear, many are not diagnosed early enough. That in turn pilots the development of dodgy diseases such as cirrhosis or liver cancer.

In comparison to the other types of the disease, hepatitis A does not actually result in long-term damage of the liver.

Nevertheless, there are still ongoing problems that may occur due to hepatitis A. This includes loss of the liver’s function, which might suddenly strike in older adults or those with chronic liver ailments. Once liver failure becomes acute, there immediately becomes a requisite for hospitalization, treatment and monitoring. In worst case scenarios, some patients with acute liver failure may have to undergo a liver transplant because their liver functions cannot be rekindled.

Treatments and Medications for Problems regarding Hepatitis A

In the field of medicine, there is no actual specific “cure” for the said disease. However, our body has the ability to rid itself of the hepatitis A virus on its own. In many cases, the liver heals with no unwavering damage within six months’ time. Even so, treatment and medications are still considered to better cope with the symptoms and signs of the disease.

Since many believe that prevention is better than cure, it is advisable to prevent yourself from getting hepatitis by getting vaccinated. Another way to do this is by simply having a healthy lifestyle with a balanced diet and sufficient exercise. One should be especially prudent with their intake of alcohol and drugs to better protect themselves against hepatitis. To ascertain whether the hepatitis A virus is present in one’s body, blood tests can be performed.


Maynard JE. Hepatitis A. Perspectives and recent advances. Am J Pathol. 1975 Dec;81(3):683-94.

Cuthbert JA. Hepatitis A: old and new. Clin Microbiol Rev. 2001 Jan;14(1):38-58.

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