What is hepatitis B?

There are two types of hepatitis B infections: 
  • Acute infection: with this type of infection, adults usually recover and do not incur any other issues. 
  • Chronic infection: if the virus lasts inside of the blood for a period longer than 6 months. This type of infection is more common among infants and young children their immune systems are not as strong. This type of infection leads to an increased risk of liver cancer
Risk factors
  • Newborns that are born to infected mothers
  • Intravenous drug users 
  • Men who have sex with men 
  • Health care works who are exposed to bodily fluids 
  • Hemodialysis patients 
The disease is normally diagnosed through several methods: 
  • Blood tests are often done to examine the levels of specific enzymes. 
  • Liver panel: a series of blood tests that are used to determine liver function.
  •  Imaging tests are used to examine the amount of scar tissue present. Scar tissue is a result of inflammation of the liver for an extended period of time. 
  • Liver biopsy may be done if the results of the other tests were inconclusive. A piece of liver tissue is removed to determine the amount of scar tissue. 
  • 3,218 cases in 2016
  • 90% of infants will develop chronic hepatitis B 
  • 1-5-year-olds have between a 25-50% chance of progressing towards chronic hepatitis B
  • 95% of adults that are infected fully recover
  • 850,000 have chronic hepatitis but this number may be as high as 2.2 million
  • 257 million individuals have chronic hepatitis B worldwide 
Hepatitis B about picture

  • "What You Need to Know About Hepatitis B." Johns Hopkins Medicine Health Library. Web 16 Jun 2018. 
  • "Hepatitis B." Mayo Clinic, Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 27 Oct. 2017. Web 16 Jun 2018. 
  • "Viral Hepatitis." Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 22 May 2018.Web 16 Jun 2016.



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