There are different types and causes that lead to hepatitis, and at least five viruses can cause hepatitis, and infection with them may disrupt its functions and thus lead to life-threatening complications. Each type has different characteristics and modes of transmission, but the symptoms tend to be somewhat similar.
What is hepatitis
It is an inflammatory condition in the liver and it usually occurs due to a viral infection, but there are other possible causes that lead to hepatitis, including autoimmune hepatitis and hepatitis, which occurs as a secondary result of drugs or toxins and alcohol.
Types of viral hepatitis
There are 5 types of viral hepatitis, and hepatitis A is usually acute and short-lived while hepatitis B, C and D are often persistent and chronic, and hepatitis E is usually acute and can be especially dangerous in pregnant women.
Methods of transmission of hepatitis
1. Hepatitis A
This type of hepatitis is most commonly transmitted by ingesting food or water contaminated with feces from an infected person.
2. Hepatitis B
Hepatitis B is transmitted through contact with infectious body fluids such as blood, vaginal secretions, or semen that contain the virus. Injecting drug use, intimate relationships with an infected partner, or sharing razors with an infected person increases your risk of hepatitis.
3. Hepatitis C
Hepatitis C is transmitted through direct contact with infected body fluids, usually through injection drug use and intimate relationships with the infected person.
4. Hepatitis D
It is also known as delta hepatitis, which is a very dangerous, blood-borne hepatitis, and hepatitis D is a rare form of hepatitis that only occurs in conjunction with hepatitis B infection, and hepatitis D virus cannot reproduce without the presence of hepatitis B, and this type is uncommon. .
5. Hepatitis E
Hepatitis E is a waterborne disease. Hepatitis E is found mainly in areas with poor sanitation and usually results from contaminated water supplies. It can also be transmitted by eating the meat of infected animals, especially undercooked. It can be transmitted through the blood.
Causes of non-infectious hepatitis
1. Alcohol and other toxins
Excessive alcohol intake can cause liver damage and inflammation, and this is sometimes referred to as alcoholic hepatitis, where alcohol affects liver cells directly and over time can cause permanent damage and this leads to liver failure and damage. Other toxic causes of hepatitis include overeating. Medicines and exposure to toxins.
2. The autoimmune system response
In some cases, the immune system mistakes it and starts attacking the liver as a harmful organism, causing persistent inflammation and it can range from mild to severe, impeding liver function more often as it affects women more than men.
Common symptoms of hepatitis
If you have contagious forms of chronic hepatitis such as hepatitis B and C, you may not have symptoms at first and symptoms may not occur until the damage affects liver function and signs and symptoms of acute hepatitis appear quickly, including:
- Flu-like symptoms.
- Dark urine.
- Pale stools
- Stomach ache.
- Unexplained weight loss.
- Yellowing of the skin and eyes, which may be signs of jaundice.
Chronic hepatitis develops slowly, so these signs and symptoms may be too subtle to be noticed.
How is hepatitis diagnosed
1. History and physical examination
To diagnose hepatitis, your doctor will first take your history to determine any risk factors you may have for infectious or non-infectious hepatitis. During the physical examination, your doctor may press gently on your abdomen to see if there is pain. Your doctor may also feel to know if the liver is enlarged or not. If your skin or eyes are yellow, your doctor will notice this during the examination.
2. Liver function tests
Liver function tests use blood samples to determine how well the liver is working. Abnormal results of these tests may be the first indication of a problem, especially if there are no signs of a physical examination of liver disease, and elevated levels of liver enzymes may indicate that the liver is suffering from stress or damage or not. It works properly.
3. Other blood tests
If the liver function tests are abnormal, your doctor will likely order other blood tests to reveal the source of the problem. These tests can check for viruses that cause hepatitis and can also be used to check for common antibodies in conditions such as autoimmune hepatitis.
Abdominal ultrasound is used to create an image of the organs inside the abdomen.This test allows your doctor to get close to the liver and nearby organs and can reveal:
- Fluids in your stomach.
- Liver damage or enlargement.
- Liver tumors.
- Abnormalities of the gallbladder.
Sometimes the pancreas also appears on ultrasound images and this can be a useful test in determining the cause of the abnormal liver function.
5. Liver biopsy
It is a surgical procedure in which your doctor takes a sample of liver tissue and it can be performed through the skin using a needle, meaning it does not require surgery and usually ultrasound is used to guide your doctor when taking the biopsy sample. This test also allows your doctor to determine how the infection or inflammation affects the liver and can also be used to take Samples from any areas of the liver that appear abnormal.
How is hepatitis treated?
1. Hepatitis A
Usually this type does not require treatment because it is a short-term disease, and your doctor may recommend bed rest, and if the symptoms cause a great deal of discomfort, such as vomiting or diarrhea, you should see a specialist.
The hepatitis A vaccine is a vaccine available to prevent this infection, and most children begin the vaccination between the ages of 12 and 18 months and where the vaccine consists of two vaccines and is also available for adults and can be combined with the hepatitis B vaccine.
2. Hepatitis B
Acute hepatitis does not require specific treatment as chronic hepatitis B is treated with antiviral drugs. This type of treatment can be expensive because it has to last for several months or years and its treatment also requires regular medical evaluations and monitoring to determine whether the virus is responding to treatment and can be prevented. Hepatitis B vaccination.
3. Hepatitis C
Antiviral medications are used to treat both acute and chronic forms of hepatitis C, but people who develop it are usually treated with a combination of antiviral therapies and may also need more tests to determine the best form of treatment. People who develop liver damage or disease may also be: Liver as a result of chronic hepatitis C is candidates for a liver transplant and at this time there is no vaccination against hepatitis C.
4. Hepatitis D
There are no antiviral drugs to treat hepatitis D at this time and according to a 2013 study of a reliable source that a drug called interferon alpha can be used to treat hepatitis D but it only shows improvement in about 25 to 30% of people, hepatitis can be prevented. D by getting vaccinated against hepatitis B since infection with hepatitis B is necessary for the development of hepatitis D.
5. Hepatitis E
Currently there are no specific medical treatments available to treat hepatitis E because the infection is often severe and can go away on its own. People with this type of infection are advised to get enough rest, drink plenty of fluids, get enough nutrients, and avoid alcohol. It requires close monitoring and care for pregnant women who develop this infection.