Hot Topic: What’s up with…Hepatitis A
What is Hepatitis A (HAV)?
Hepatitis A infection is a liver infection caused by the hepatitis A virus (HAV)
How is HAV infection spread?
- HAV spreads when a person ingests trace amounts of fecal matter from a person infected with HAV
- This transmission most commonly occurs during eating, drinking, and sexual activities
Is it preventable?
- There is a Hepatitis A vaccination that can prevent infection
- It is normally given as 2 shots 6 months apart
- Talk with your primary care provider for more information regarding vaccination
- Free Hepatitis A vaccine is available at the Eastern Clinic, Druid Clinic, or SPOT mobile clinic. The vaccine is available through the Syringe Exchange Program on Mondays from 9:30-11:30 AM (S Monroe & Ramsey) and Thursdays from 12:45-3:30 (E Monument St & N Milton Ave). More details available here.
What are the signs and symptoms of HAV infection?
Adapted with permission from the County of San Diego Health, 3/29
Symptoms usually appear 4 weeks after exposure and normally last less than 2 months
How is HAV infection diagnosed?
- A provider can diagnose HAV infection based off of symptoms and a blood sample
How is hepatitis A treated?
- If you’ve been exposed to HAV in the past 14 days and have not been vaccinated, you can receive the vaccination to prevent severe illness from occurring
- Rest, fluids, and proper nutrition is recommended to treat symptoms
- Seek medical attention if symptoms become severe