Hepatitis A Information
Hepatitis A (HAV) is a virus that affects the liver. It causes an acute infection which means that
symptoms start soon after exposure with an incubation period of 14-28 days.
Unlike Hepatitis B and C, Hepatitis A does not cause long term, chronic
What Are the Symptoms
of Hepatitis A?
Symptoms of Hepatitis A include:
- Abdominal cramps
- Fever, tiredness
- Dark yellow or brown urine
- Pale or white-colored stool (poop)
- Jaundice (Yellowing of the eyes or skin)
- Young children may have only a mild flu-like illness without jaundice,
or may have no symptoms.
How Could I
Get Infected With Hepatitis A?
Hepatitis A virus leaves
the body in the stool (poop). The virus enters another person when hands, food,
or objects contaminated with stool are put in the mouth.
A often spreads in daycares or households where people have close contact and
share bathroom facilities.
- Food can
be contaminated with Hepatitis A virus
A can be spread through sexual activity if hands or mouth come in contact with
stool (poop) or parts of the body
contaminated with stool.
Who Should Get Tested for Hepatitis A?
Testing for Hepatitis A is recommended for people who are experiencing
the signs and symptoms of Hepatitis A infection. This testing can be done at a doctor’s
office, emergency room, or hospital.
Is there a
Vaccine for Hepatitis A?
Yes, there is a vaccine that can help prevent hepatitis
It is recommended for:
• All children at one and two years of age
• People with chronic liver disease, including chronic
hepatitis B and C
• Men who have sex with men
• People who use drugs
• People experiencing homelessness
• Travelers to countries where hepatitis A is common
People who have been diagnosed with Hepatitis B or C are highly
encouraged to get the Hepatitis A vaccine.
A be Treated?
There is no specific
treatment for Hepatitis A. Rest, a low fat diet, and plenty of fluids are
recommended. Avoid drugs and alcohol, as these can further damage the
liver. Most people recover within 3
weeks. Hepatitis A infection is more severe with age and may require
hospitalization in some cases.