Hepatitis A is caused by a virus and is preventable with a vaccine. Almost always thought of as a traveler’s disease, Hep A can be spread through sexual contact, especially any feces to mouth (analingus) action, or sharing drug equipment with an infected partner.
What kind of symptoms could I have if I am infected?
- Not everyone will have symptoms.
- Some people when first infected might experience fatigue, nausea and vomiting, abdominal pain, jaundice (yellowing of the whites of the eyes and skin), dark urine, low-grade fever and loss of appetite.
How do I prevent this?
- Condoms and dental dams
- Using clean needles
How do I get tested?
- Blood test
- Results take 1-2 weeks to come back
What if I test positive?
There is no drug or medication treatment. If you are infected with Hepatitis A, it will eventually run its course and you will recover completely. Occasionally people need to be hospitalized for supportive care like intravenous fluids.
How do I know it’s gone?
- Once infected and recovered, or vaccinated – you are protected for life from getting it again
Need more info? Check out the Canadian Liver Foundation
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