Viral infections – Hepatitis B

Viral infections and contagious diseases affect a high percentage of the country’s population.

Although there are well-established treatment and prevention schemes and methods, infections and viruses are being transmitted more and more often, in more and more communities, and can also affect people who are taking care of their personal health.

Hepatitis B is an infection that occurs when the virus is inoculated into the liver.

The safest way to prevent contracting the virus is vaccination. The vaccination scheme starts early and must be repeated when antibodies are low and the patient is no longer protected against the virus.

The ways in which the virus is transmitted are varied and some categories of activities or lifestyles increase the risk of contracting the virus:

  • Sexual activity – people who have a partner with hepatitis B virus, who have multiple life partners in limited periods of time (6 months) but also some groups of people such as homosexuals are at increased risk of being infected with hepatitis B virus.

  • People with skin lesions – healthcare workers are always at risk of being infected with hepatitis B virus because they work in open fields, handle blood and any skin lesion can be considered a gateway for hepatitis B virus. Also, drug users, especially those who inject their substances, do not use sterile syringes, for economic reasons, lack of education, lack of information or because of the euphoric state they generate. In the case of these people, the virus can easily be transmitted.

  • Hemodialysis patients – dialysis is used for patients with severe kidney failure. This involves filtering their own blood every 3 days. Thus, these patients are at increased risk of hepatitis B virus inoculation if the equipment is not handled in sterile conditions and if it has already been infected.

  • Patients suffering from liver disease – patients suffering from chronic liver disease have a low liver activity and especially a low liver reactivity, therefore inoculation with hepatitis B virus can be more easily achieved.

  • People who travel a lot are normally at increased risk of contracting certain viruses. Due to different geographical areas and regional peculiarities, bacteria and viruses can undergo changes and adaptations that make the human body susceptible to infection.

There are also categories of people who do not respond to vaccination against hepatitis B virus.

For example, people over 40, smokers, alcoholics, those with liver disease or depressed immunity may have a more difficult time responding than younger, healthy people.

It is important to note that hepatitis B vaccination, once given, does not last indefinitely.

It does not have a lifelong effect, so every 5-7 years, or even more often for people working in high-risk environments, antibody levels need to be assessed to determine the need for a new dose of the vaccine.

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