Hepatitis A - Overview

CDC

Hepatitis A is a liver disease caused by the hepatitis A virus. Hepatitis A can affect anyone. In the United States, hepatitis A can occur in situations ranging from isolated cases of disease to widespread epidemics.

Good personal hygiene and proper sanitation can help prevent hepatitis A. Vaccines are also available for long-term prevention of hepatitis A virus infection in persons 12 months of age and older. Immune globulin is available for short-term prevention of hepatitis A virus infection in individuals of all ages.

 

Transmission 

  • HAV is found in the stool (feces) of persons with hepatitis A.
  • HAV is usually spread from person to person by putting something in the mouth (even though it might look clean) that has been contaminated with the stool of a person with hepatitis A.

Prevention

  • Hepatitis A vaccine is the best protection.
  • Short-term protection against hepatitis A is available from immune globulin. It can be given before and within 2 weeks of coming in contact with HAV.
  • Always wash your hands with soap and water after using the bathroom, changing a diaper, and before preparing and eating food.

 

Hepatitis A - Overview:  Created on October 21st, 2007.  Last Modified on October 21st, 2007

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About CDC

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is one of the 13 major operating components of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), which is the principal agency in the United States government for protecting the health and safety of all Americans and for providing essential human services, especially for those people who are least able to help themselves.

Since it was founded in 1946 to help control malaria, CDC has remained at the forefront of public health efforts to prevent and control infectious and chronic diseases, injuries, workplace hazards, disabilities and environmental health threats.

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