Preventing Liver Damage: Early Diagnosis and Treatment of Hepatitis Can Reduce Disease Burden
Infectious and Non-Infectious Causes of Hepatitis
Vijayawada, July 5, 2023 – Hepatitis, a condition characterized by liver damage, can be caused by various infectious and non-infectious factors. Infectious causes include hepatitis viruses (A, B, C, D, and E), as well as HSV and CMV. Non-infectious causes encompass alcohol consumption, certain drugs like Ayurveda and homoeopathy, anti-tuberculous drugs, Wilson disease, and autoimmune hepatitis.
Chronic Hepatitis: A Common Cause of Liver Damage and Cancer
Chronic hepatitis, lasting for more than 6 months, is a significant contributor to irreversible liver damage and the development of liver cancer. Hepatitis B and C viruses are the most common causes of chronic hepatitis. It is crucial to diagnose and treat these conditions early to prevent further liver damage. If left untreated, chronic hepatitis can lead to fibrosis, cirrhosis, and ultimately liver failure.
Promising Advances in Hepatitis Treatment and Prevention
While chronic hepatitis has traditionally been a challenging condition to manage, there have been notable advancements in treatment options. Hepatitis C can now be completely cured with the latest medical discoveries. However, treatment for hepatitis B often requires prolonged or lifelong management. Liver transplantation is considered a promising avenue for advanced cases, but it comes with financial costs, post-transplant complications, and the risk of disease recurrence in the long term.
Importance of Screening and Vaccination for Hepatitis B and C
Prevention of transmission plays a crucial role in combating hepatitis. Early diagnosis and treatment of underlying hepatitis infections can significantly reduce the disease burden. It is essential to implement preventive measures, such as screening for hepatitis B and C, along with early vaccination against hepatitis B. These measures are key to preventing liver damage, cirrhosis, and the development of liver cancer.