Hep B (Hepatitis)

Hep B (Hepatitis) is a viral infection of the liver that can cause chronic liver disease.

At-Risk Populations

  • Someone who has vaginal and/or anal sex with someone who is infected with HBV.
  • Someone who shares needles, syringes and/or works for any reason, such as using drugs, piercing and/or tattooing.
  • Someone who shares or handles razors, nail files, combs, toothbrushes and/or any other personal care items of someone who has HBV.
  • Someone who has been exposed to body and/or body fluids at work.
  • If you are at-risk for hepatitis B infection, contact your doctor. Early diagnosis will help prevent spreading the disease and protect your liver.

    How It Spreads

    • Hepatitis B (HBV) is passed in blood, semen and vaginal fluids.
    • It can be passed from mother to child at birth.

    Prevention

    • Get a preventive Hepatitis A & B vaccine series. (more)
    • Use gloves if touching blood or body fluids.
    • Don’t share needles or works for injecting drugs, piercing, tattooing or any other reason. (more)
    • Don’t share personal care items, such toothbrushes, razors, nail files, combs or washcloths.  Some blood may be on it.
    • Practice safer (more)
    • If you are a health care worker, always follow routine barrier precautions and safely handle needles and other sharps. (more)

    Testing & Diagnosis

    If you think you have been exposed to Hepatitis B; Contact your primary care physician or go to a Hepatitis testing, counseling and referral site to get tested, Hepatitis B Immune Globulin (HBIG) may be recommended for persons with a confirmed exposure to Hepatitis B, such as newborn infants of mother and sex partners of with Hepatitis B patients or carriers.

    Treatment

    • Rest
    • Avoid drinking alcoholic beverages
    • Do not shoot drugs.
    • Only take medications approved by your physician.
    • Eat healthy food.
    • Get regular check-ups.
    • Get preventive hepatitis A and hepatitis B vaccinations.
    • Do not donate your blood, body organs, other tissue, or sperm.
    • Li>Do not share toothbrushes, razors, or other personal care articles that might have blood/body fluids on them.
    • Cover your cuts or open sores.
    • Abstain from having sex, if not practice safer sex practices.