Hepatitis A

By | 8 April 2021

Hepatitis A disease is a liver infection caused by the transmission of the Hepatitis A virus.

How Is Hepatitis A Virus Transmitted?

The disease is mostly caused by the consumption of water and food contaminated with feces and containing pathogens. People who prepare food and work in the food industry do not pay attention to cleaning measures, eating raw or undercooked foods contaminated with sewage water is the most common way of contamination. Apart from this, another way of transmission is homosexual / bisexual sexual intercourse. It is common in countries with poor hygienic conditions.

What are the Symptoms of Hepatitis A Disease?

Hepatitis A virus infections mostly show symptoms in adults, while they usually have a mild course in children under 6 years of age. The severity of the disease gradually increases in older ages. Usually, findings occur 15-50 days (average 28 days) after contact with the virus. Symptoms:

  • Weakness, tiredness
  • Loss of appetite
  • Nausea-vomiting, stomach upset
  • Diarrhea
  • Abdominal pain
  • Weight loss
  • Fire
  • Yellowing of the eyes and skin
  • Dark (tea-colored) urine
  • Muddy or whitish stools

What is the Prevalence of Hepatitis A Disease?

Hepatitis A is common all over the world, although it differs according to socioeconomic status and regions. The disease is more common in the autumn and the first months of winter. Our country is among the countries with a moderate prevalence of Hepatitis A infection in the world.

Since the disease is directly related to socioeconomic status and living conditions, with the improvement of these conditions, there is a significant decrease in the incidence of the disease, and the frequency of exposure to the hepatitis A virus and the incidence of the disease shifts to older ages.

Who is at More Risk?

  • Those with chronic liver disease
  • Chronic Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C patients
  • HIV / AIDS patients
  • Those with coagulation disorders
  • Organ and bone marrow transplant candidates and recipients
  • Gay / bisexual men
  • Sewer workers
  • Those who travel to countries where hepatitis A is common
  • Personnel working in services that provide sub-care services in health institutions (such as pediatric infection services, intensive care units)
  • Laboratory workers who work with fecal material are at greater risk.

What are the Prevention Methods from Hepatitis A?

Considering the main transmission route of hepatitis A infection, preventing the virus from contaminating food, water, and the environment is the most important control method.

  • General cleaning rules should be followed
  • Hands should be washed with soap and water
  • People working in the food industry should be checked
  • Food that is sure to be clean and cooked thoroughly should be consumed.
  • If well water or tank water is used in the region, the waters must be chlorinated by the chlorine usage instructions.
  • In mandatory situations, water should be boiled for at least 10 minutes.
  • Garbage should be collected in sealed garbage bins and garbage bags should be left closed.

Another method of preventing hepatitis A disease is vaccination.

In our country, it entered the childhood vaccination calendar at the end of 2012, and it is administered in 2 doses, at the end of 18 and 24 months, to children born on March 1, 2011, and later.

When local side effects are seen after vaccination, the cold application can be applied to the area where the vaccine is applied and drugs containing paracetamol can be given.

Is There a Treatment for Hepatitis A?

There is no specific treatment for the disease that develops due to the hepatitis A virus. Supportive treatment is given according to the complaints. During this period, patients should not use any external drugs, herbal additives, and alcohol, other than those prescribed by the doctor.

How Many Doses Is Hepatitis A Vaccine Administered in Children?

Hepatitis A vaccine is administered to children in two doses. Immunity reaches high levels after two doses.

How Long Should Be Between 2 Doses of Hepatitis A Vaccine?

At least 6 months should be left between the second dose and the second dose. It can be administered simultaneously with other childhood vaccines or regardless of time.

How is Hepatitis A Vaccine Application?

It is applied intramuscularly to the upper arm (deltoid muscle). The arm is bent 45 ° inward at the elbow and the injector is administered intramuscularly so that it enters the skin at a 90 ° right angle.

What is the Childhood Application Scheme for Hepatitis A Vaccine?

In our country, it entered the childhood vaccination calendar at the end of 2012, and it is administered in 2 doses, at the end of 18 and 24 months, to children born on March 1, 2011, and later.

When Can Hepatitis A Vaccine Be Administered Earliest?

It can be applied in the 12th month at the earliest.

What is the Application Scheme of Hepatitis A Vaccine in Adults?

Vaccine administration in adults is in 2 doses at least 6 months apart, as in children. However, pre-vaccination blood analysis should be performed in adults to evaluate whether the person has been immunized before.

Is Hepatitis A Vaccine Applicable During Pregnancy?

There is no definitive evidence that it is safe to do during pregnancy. Unless there is a high risk of getting sick in pregnant women, the vaccine should not be administered.

What Are The Situations That Hepatitis A Vaccine Should Not Be Done?

Anaphylactic reaction to a vaccine is advanced (allergy that starts suddenly and can cause death), and subsequent doses of that vaccine should not be administered.
In case of severe illness with or without fever, the attending physician should be consulted.

What Are the Side Effects of Hepatitis A Vaccine?

Side effects from the hepatitis A vaccine are rare.

Local side effects of hepatitis A vaccine; There may be pain, tenderness, or redness at the injection site. These side effects can be seen in 15-20% in children and 56% in adults. Systemic reactions such as fever, diarrhea, vomiting, and fatigue are seen in less than 10%. Serious side effects are rare.

When local side effects are seen after vaccination, the cold application can be applied to the area where the vaccine is applied and drugs containing paracetamol can be given.