Hepatitis Awareness Day
Hepatitis is an inflammation of the liver, where the condition can be self-limiting or can progress to fibrosis (scarring), cirrhosis or liver cancer. Hepatitis viruses are the most common cause of hepatitis in the world but other infections, toxic substances such as alcohol and certain drugs, autoimmune diseases can also cause hepatitis. Worldwide, In 2015, hepatitis A occurred in about 114 million people, chronic hepatitis B affected about 343 million people and chronic hepatitis C about 142 million people.
There are 5 main hepatitis viruses, referred to as types A, B, C, D and E. These 5 types are of the greatest concern because of the burden of illness and death they cause and potential for outbreaks and epidemic spread. In particular, Hepatitis B and C can lead to chronic disease in hundreds of millions of people and, together, are the most common cause of liver cirrhosis and cancer. As per World Health Organization, the census states that more than 60% of the liver cancer cases are due to late testing and treatment of viral hepatitis infection.
Hepatitis A and E are typically caused by ingestion of contaminated food or water. Whilst, Hepatitis B, C and D usually occur as a result of parenteral contact (such as injection or infusion) with infected body fluids. Common modes of transmission for these viruses include receipt of contaminated blood or blood products through blood transfusion, invasive medical procedures using contaminated equipment, and for hepatitis B transmission from mother to baby at birth, from family member to child and also, by sexual contact from an infected sexual partner. Out of these Hepatitis A, B and D has a prevention by immunization.
The objectives for World Hepatitis Day, focuses on encouraging people to come forward to access hepatitis prevention, testing and treatment services. Raise awareness about different forms of hepatitis and how they are transmitted. To make an urge for national and regional policymakers to increase political and financial commitments for hepatitis response. Increase awareness about Hepatitis A and B vaccines. Lastly, to provide an opportunity for strengthening prevention, screening, and control of viral hepatitis and its related diseases.
Hepatitis and kidneys:
As the term “hepatitis” implies inflammation of the liver, which gives the impression that the only organ affected in hepatitis B or C is the liver but the kidney is one of such organ that hepatitis viruses greatly affect both directly and indirectly. Different types of Kidney Disease are induced by Hepatitis B Virus infection depending on the kidney’s reaction to the virus and inflammation.
Source: Wikipedia and WHO