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What is Hepatitis A?


By STD Check.com

What is hepatitis A?

Hepatitis A is a contagious, acute (new) liver disease that, unlike hepatitis B and C, does not become chronic (long- term). Hepatitis A is a virus and its infections can be mild and last a few weeks, or severe and last several months. People with hepatitis A are typically cured of the virus without treatment and often only need proper rest and fluid intake.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), hepatitis A transmission is decreasing in the United States. Getting tested is important if you have travelled or have lived in locations like Mexico, Eastern Europe, Africa, Central or South America, or certain parts of Asia where hepatitis A is prevalent. To prevent infection, the hepatitis A vaccine can safely and effectively reduce your risk of transmission.

How is hepatitis A transmitted?

The hepatitis A virus can be contracted or spread when a person ingests infected fecal matter through contact with objects, food or drinks that carry the virus even in microscopic amounts. Hepatitis A can also be transmitted during oral-anal sexual contact with an infected person. Since symptoms are often mild or not apparent, a person can transmit the virus to others up to two weeks before symptoms appear.

What are the symptoms of hepatitis A?

Although not always present, hepatitis A symptoms include fever, fatigue, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, dark urine, clay-colored bowel movements, joint pain and jaundice (a yellowing of the skin or eyes). If present, symptoms usually appear as early as several days or two to six weeks post-exposure. Acute hepatitis A symptoms usually last less than two months, but can last up to six months.

Is there treatment for hepatitis A?

There is no treatment for hepatitis A. Individuals with the virus might feel sick for a few months before getting better. Our doctors recommend adequate nutrition, rest, staying hydrated and receiving monitoring by a specialist. Liver damaging substances like alcohol and certain medications should be avoided if you have hepatitis A.

How can I prevent getting hepatitis A?

The best method for preventing hepatitis A is to get vaccinated. The CDC recommends getting a shot of immunoglobulin before traveling or if you are at a high risk of contracting the virus. Another way to help prevent contracting the hepatitis A virus is to thoroughly wash your hands with soap and hot water after using the bathroom or changing a diaper, and before and after preparing food.

How do I get tested for hepatitis A?

Our doctors recommend our FDA-approved Hepatitis A Antibody test. This blood test searches for antibodies to the Hepatitis A virus. Order your test online or contact one of our certified health specialists by phone at 1-800-456-2323 or via our live chat feature. Visit one of our 4,000+ conveniently-located testing centers nationwide to get tested. No undressing or swabbing is necessary and testing only takes a few minutes. Your test results are emailed to you within 1-2 business days.

We keep your health information private.

When you purchase our testing, you are assigned a unique identification code (works in most locations) that allows you to visit the lab without giving your name or filling out any paperwork. With this code, you can track your test and retrieve your results.

Your data is secure.

Our system is protected by a 128-bit secure socket layer (SSL) encryption and the health industry standard HL-7 interface. When you call our Care Advisors or process your order online, your information is protected throughout the process. We refer you to one of our 4,000 nationwide test centers, so your information is protected from the beginning to the end of the testing process.

We do not accept health insurance.

By not accepting health insurance as a payment method, we are able to prevent your testing from being reported to your insurance company and your results from being placed on your medical record. Instead, we accept many other forms of payment including credit and debit cards, prepaid gift cards bearing the Visa, MasterCard, Discover, or American Express logo, e-Checks, cashiers checks or money orders, PayPal, Health Savings Accounts (HSA)s and Flex Spending Accounts (FSAs). The charge on your statement will say “Medology”. We do not store your personal or financial information after your services are complete.

We keep your results confidential.

If you test positive, we are here for you. Our trained Care Advisors are available 24/7 to guide you step-by-step. Our physicians are available for a free consultation by phone to explain your results, answer questions, and provide guidance. If you test negative, your code is permanently erased, guaranteeing your satisfaction and total privacy.

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