Hepatitis: True or false?
Hepatitis, an inflammation of the liver, is usually caused by a virus. How much do you know about viral hepatitis? Test your knowledge with this quiz.
True or false: Hepatitis is caused by a single virus.
False. There are several types of viruses that cause hepatitis, including hepatitis A, B, C, D and E. It's thought there are still-undiscovered hepatitis-causing viruses as well.
True or false: You can only get viral hepatitis by abusing injection drugs.
False. Hepatitis A is spread mainly through contaminated food or water; type A also spreads through sex and close personal contact. Hepatitis B spreads through contact with blood or through sex. It can also pass from an infected mother to her baby during birth. Hepatitis C is usually spread through blood, especially blood transfusions done before 1992.
True or false: Hepatitis can last a lifetime.
True. In some cases, hepatitis is mild and lasts a few weeks or months. Other times, however, hepatitis B, C, D and E can each develop into a chronic, lifelong illness. Without treatment, this can lead to more serious issues, such as liver cancer, liver failure and death.
True or false: If you have hepatitis B, you're also at risk for getting hepatitis D.
True. Like some other types of hepatitis, type D is spread through contact with infected blood. Unlike other forms, however, it can only occur in people who also have hepatitis B.
True or false: If you've had standard vaccinations, you're protected against hepatitis.
False. All children should be vaccinated against hepatitis A and B. The vaccine for type B will also help protect you from type D. However, there is no available vaccine for hepatitis C or E. To protect yourself from type C:
- Practice food hygiene.
- Use a latex condom during sex.
- Don't share personal items such as nail clippers, razors and toothbrushes.
One symptom of hepatitis is jaundice: a yellowing of the eyes and skin. Other symptoms include fatigue, abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and fever.
Sources: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; Immunizations Action Coalition; National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases
This information is provided for educational purposes only. Individuals should always consult with their healthcare providers regarding medical care or treatment, as recommendations, services or resources are not a substitute for the advice or recommendation of an individual's physician or healthcare provider. Services or treatment options may not be covered under an individual's particular health plan.