Am I suffering from Hepatitis?
Q: I am a 23 years old male. Once I was vaccinated with HBV vaccine( all three dosses). After that I had gone for hepatitis-B test, and it was found positive. The doctor asked me to take Lamvir 10mg, and Udiliv 100 mg daily, and I kept on taking medicine for more than a year. After this, I went for the test many times. But each time the result came out as HBV positive. Although I don't have any other problem except cold, the doctor said that a person suffering from hepatitis B could not have cold and cough. I don't understand what should I do. Please advise.
A:Chronic hepatitis may be of 2 types - chronic inactive hepatitis B (healthy carriers) or chronic active hepatitis B. Healthy carriers have normal liver enzymes (AST and ALT) and the markers of infectivity (HBeAg, HBV DNA) may be negative. But HBsAg, HBcAb of IgG type, and HBeAb are present in the blood. Patients with chronic active hepatitis B have mild-to-moderate elevation of the liver enzymes (<5 times the upper limit of normal), high HBV DNA levels and presence of HBsAg and HBcAb (IgG or IgM) in the blood. There is no diet restriction for patients with acute and chronic hepatitis. Healthy carriers should have annual blood tests to check the liver enzyme levels while those with chronic active hepatitis should have blood tests (liver enzyme levels, HBV serology and viral load), a liver biopsy and be put on treatment. Review with your physician all medicines you take as some can damage the liver and avoid alcohol. People can get HBV infection from you by coming in contact with your blood, serum or semen. Cover all cuts and open sores with a bandage, wash your hands well after touching your blood or body fluids and throw away used personal items such as tissues etc. in a bag so others will not be exposed to your blood. Do not share toothbrushes, razors, nail clippers/scissors, washcloths, or anything that may have come in contact with your blood or body fluids. Do not donate blood. You would need to tell your partner that you are infected and she would need to see a doctor for HBV testing and appropriate immunisation. All household members must see the doctor and be tested for the disease. Treatment is recommended for patients with chronic active hepatitis and the following drugs are used - adefovir dipivoxil, interferon alfa-2b, pegylated interferon alfa-2a, lamivudine, entecavir, and telbivudine.