The liver is the site for the metabolism of carbohydrates, proteins and lipids, generating nutrients that will further satiate cellular needs, to keep them nourished and ready to perform their functions.
In addition to this role in metabolism, the liver also helps to filter and purify blood and remove toxic substances from the body.
Poor liver function is called liver failure and is triggered when a large proportion of liver cells become non-functional.
Hepatitis plays a major role in the destruction of liver cells through chronic damage.
Hepatitis B is a viral infection caused by infection of the liver with the hepatitis B virus (HBV). In over 90% of cases where the virus is present in the liver, the body is able to effectively fight and eliminate it.
In this case, hepatitis B is acute and, in a few months, HBV will no longer be detectable in the blood. This is primarily due to the increased immunity of the human body.
If the immune system fails to eliminate the pathogen, the hepatitis B virus remains confined to the liver for life, causing chronic hepatitis, one of the diseases that can lead to liver failure over time.
Characteristics of hepatitis B
The virus can be detected in blood tests at least 30 days after inoculation
The virus has an incubation period of about 75 days
Hepatitis B is passed from mother to child or through exposure to infected blood, saliva or vaginal and seminal secretions.
In adults, hepatitis B virus infection becomes chronic in less than 5% of cases.
In the dental practice, since needles are disposable and dental instruments are sterilized after each use, the risks of infection are minimal if hygiene protocols are followed.
Symptoms of hepatitis B virus infection
In the acute phase of infection, there are rarely any symptoms to alert the patient
Jaundice: yellowing of the skin and scrotum due to increased bilirubin.
Nausea, vomiting or abdominal pain of varying intensity
Staining of the urine
It is not possible to differentiate between types of hepatitis just by judging the clinical appearance of the patient.
Laboratory tests will confirm the diagnosis and guide the therapeutic plan.
A positive diagnosis of hepatitis B is confirmed by the presence of antigens directed against anti-HBs antibodies.
If there is evidence of hepatitis B virus persisting in the body for more than 6 months, then chronic hepatitis B can be confirmed.
There is currently no specific treatment for acute hepatitis B.
Hepatitis B is a viral infection that affects the liver and can lead to severe liver pathologies such as cirrhosis or liver cancer. This disease is caused by the hepatitis B virus (HBV), which is transmitted through contact with blood or other infected body fluids such as saliva, semen or vaginal secretions.
Hepatitis B is a major public health problem worldwide, particularly affecting resource-poor areas. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), more than 250 million people are infected with HBV worldwide, and about one million deaths are reported annually due to hepatitis B and its complications.
Symptoms and diagnosis
HBV infection can be asymptomatic or cause flu-like symptoms such as fever, fatigue, muscle and headache pain, loss of appetite or nausea. In some cases, jaundice, a condition that causes the skin and eyes to turn yellow, may occur.
Hepatitis B is diagnosed by testing blood for specific markers of the virus. These tests can be carried out at the patient’s request or as part of medical screening as part of national health programs.
Treatment is symptomatic, compensating for fluid loss due to vomiting and diarrhea and restoring nutritional balance.
Antiviral agents are available against chronic hepatitis B and are administered orally. Their role is to slow the progression of hepatitis to cirrhosis or liver failure.
The prophylactic hepatitis B vaccine is given from childhood, consists of 3 doses and provides protection against the disease for a period of at least 5 years.
Treatment of hepatitis B depends on the stage of the disease and the severity of the symptoms. In acute forms of the infection, the patient can be treated to reduce symptoms and prevent complications. In chronic hepatitis B, treatment aims to suppress replication of the virus and prevent liver complications.
Antivirals, such as interferon or lamivudine, are often prescribed to suppress virus replication. In severe cases of hepatitis B, the patient may require hospital treatment, which may include intravenous fluid therapy and other supportive measures.
Hepatitis B can be prevented by vaccination. Hepatitis B vaccine is available worldwide and is included in national immunization programs in many countries. Vaccination is particularly recommended for children and young adults, as well as for people at increased risk of infection, such as healthcare workers, people living with an infected partner or people who inject drugs.
Hepatitis B is a serious infectious disease that can lead to severe liver pathology. It is important to identify the infection early as early intervention can prevent or reduce liver complications. Vaccination against hepatitis B is essential to prevent infection, especially in areas at high risk of transmission.
In addition, it is important to take precautions to prevent transmission of the virus, such as using condoms during sex, avoiding sharing personal items that may contain blood or other body fluids, such as toothbrushes, and avoiding the use of injectable drugs.
In conclusion, hepatitis B is a major global public health problem. While treatment can be effective in reducing symptoms and preventing liver complications, vaccination remains the most important method of preventing HBV infection. By being aware of the risks and taking preventive measures, we can reduce the impact of this disease on public health.