Dr. Shahzad Akram
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Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C Causes

Hepatitis C is caused by Hepatitis C virus (HCV) and Hepatitis B is a liver disease caused by Hepatitis B virus (HBV). As compared to Hepatitis C, Hepatitis B is less commonly found. Hepatitis C, B and A are all contagious. As soon as the virus infects a person, short-term symptoms that appear are usually not very alarming. As a result it does not even occur to many persons that Hepatitis C virus has infected them. As the disease advances, the symptoms start becoming noticeable. Untreated hepatitis can cause permanent damage to the liver.

Causes of Spread of Hepatitis

  • Hepatitis C is not a sexually transmitted disease but it has also not been conclusively decided whether it can spread through intimate unprotected sexual contact or not. It is better to be careful.
  • Transfusion of blood from infected person. This cause has become rare due to screening of blood before transfusion.
  • It can be transmitted from mother to infant during nursing period if the mother is infected.
  • Sharing needles by drug addicts.
  • Use of infected blades and razors at home or barbershops.
  • Use of infected syringe and other drug-injecting equipment.
  • Using toothbrush of infected person.
  • Use of unclean instruments at dental clinics. In some parts of the world this has become major route of transmission.
  • Shaking hands or hugging the infected person does not transmit hepatitis B and C.

Another viewpoint is that external infection is not always the cause of hepatitis C. The virus of hepatitis can generate itself within the body even without external infection. This is explained by considering the example of food becoming stale. Have you ever thought from where does the bacteria/virus come in to the food when it becomes stale? Does that come from outside or does that produce itself within the food? Somewhat similar phenomenon can also occur in certain areas of the human body as result of prolonged use of specific dietary items. Continuous and frequent use of certain food items provides a suitable ground for the virus to produce itself, grow and multiply. If a person with a specific constitution continues to use such diet, there are chances that he/she will develop hepatitis sooner or later even without external infection. This concept is not recognized by modern medical science but the fact is that this can happen in case of hepatitis. This is probably one of the reasons of increase in occurrence of hepatitis even with good hygiene and other protective measures.

Depending on lifestyle and individual immune system, some people run in to serious liver problems and advance stage of hepatitis while some fight it off and get cured automatically. This can be done if the person knows that he/she has been infected. Those who start over-worrying and get panicky, become easy prey of this disease. Certain individuals may be carriers of HBV but may not be suffering chronically themselves. Most of the infected infants and children do become chronic sufferers with passage of time. In certain cases that are potentially infectious, no symptoms and no abnormalities are found on laboratory testing. Such cases can be detected through liver biopsy. Some individuals with chronic hepatitis B might hardly indicate liver disease and might not develop complications whereas some will develop liver cirrhosis.

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