Hepatitis A

February 8, 2017

Hepatitis is inflammation of the liver that sometimes causes permanent damage. It is caused by viruses, bacteria, certain medications, or alcohol. It may also be caused by certain diseases, such as autoimmune diseases, metabolic diseases, and congenital (present at birth) abnormalities, such as biliary atresia and Wilson disease. Generally, symptoms of hepatitis include fever, jaundice (yellowing of the skin and eyes), and an enlarged liver. There are several types of hepatitis.

Hepatitis A, sometimes called hep A or HAV, is a liver disease caused by the hepatitis A virus. (A virus is a tiny particle that needs to infect and control the cells of your body in order to live and reproduce). Hepatitis A is an acute infectious disease of the liver caused by the hepatitis A virus, a small, non-enveloped hepatotropic virus classified in the genus Hepatovirus within the family Picornaviridae.

The disease is highly transmissible through faecal-oral route. Hepatitis A is often asymptomatic or mild, particularly in children below five years of age, but the severity increases with age. Up to 90% of hepatitis A infections in children present no symptoms. In adults, the onset of illness is usually abrupt with fever, loss of appetite, nausea and vomiting. Jaundice is the predominant symptom. Symptoms may last between 1 to 2 weeks, or up to months. About 15% of patients have prolonged or relapsing symptoms over a 6–9-month period.

People usually get hepatitis A by having close contact with a person who is infected, from food or drinks prepared by someone who is infected, or by eating shellfish harvested from sewage-contaminated water.  After the virus enters the body, there is an incubation period lasting 2 to 7 weeks until illness begins.

Hepatitis A still occurs in the United States, although not as frequently as it once did. Over the last several decades, there has been more than a 90% decrease in Hepatitis A cases. New cases are now estimated to be around 3,000 each year. Many experts believe this decline is a result of the vaccination of children and people at risk for Hepatitis A. Many of the new cases, however, are from American travelers who got infected while traveling to parts of the world where Hepatitis A is common.


Hepatitis A is usually spread when a person ingests fecal matter—even in microscopic amounts—from contact with objects, food, or drinks contaminated by feces or stool from an infected person. Hepatitis A can be spread when:

  • An infected person does not wash his/her hands properly after going to the bathroom and then touches objects or food
  • A caregiver does not properly wash his or her hands after changing diapers or cleaning up the stool of an infected person
  • Someone engages in sexual activities with an infected person Hepatitis A also can be spread through contaminated food or water. Contamination of food can happen at any point: growing, harvesting, processing, handling, and even after cooking. This most often occurs in countries where Hepatitis A is common.

Risk Factors

Risk Factors include –

Children, teens, and adults who may be at high risk of hepatitis A include the following:

  • People traveling to areas of where hepatitis A is prevalent, including, but not limited to: Africa, Asia (except Japan), the Mediterranean basin, Eastern Europe, the Middle East, Central and South America, Mexico, and parts of the Caribbean
  • People living in or relocating to any community in the U.S. or abroad with one or more recorded hepatitis A outbreaks within the past five years
  • Military personnel
  • People who engage in high-risk sexual activity
  • Users of illegal intravenous (IV) drugs
  • Hemophiliacs and other recipients of therapeutic blood products
  • Employees of day-care centers
  • Institutional care workers
  • Laboratory workers who handle live hepatitis A virus
  • People who handle primate animals that may be carrying the hepatitis A virus

Hepatitis A is sometimes called a traveler’s disease because it is the most frequently occurring, vaccine-preventable infection in travelers. However, it is possible to become infected with hepatitis A virus without ever leaving the United States. Some cases reported in the United States have occurred in people with no identifiable risk factors.


Symptoms of hepatitis A include –

  • fever
  • weakness
  • fatigue
  • loss of appetite
  • nausea
  • joint aches and pains
  • vomiting
  • jaundice (yellowish eyes and skin, dark urine and pale-coloured faeces)

The duration of the illness varies but most people feel better and their Liver Function Tests (LFTs) begin to normalise a month after the onset of infection. Hepatitis A infection never causes a chronic (long-term) infection.

Death because of hepatitis A infection is very rare. The likelihood of severe disease or death resulting from hepatitis A infection is much greater in people with pre-existing liver damage, including people with chronic liver disease due to hepatitis B or C, and people over 50 years of age.


In rare cases, hepatitis A can cause loss of liver function that occurs suddenly, especially in older adults or people with chronic liver diseases. Acute liver failure requires hospitalization for monitoring and treatment. Some people with acute liver failure may require a liver transplant.


Hepatitis A usually clears up on its own and does not require treatment. Patients should make sure to get plenty of rest and avoid drinking any alcohol until they are fully recovered.

In addition to avoiding risky behaviors, there are two methods for prevention of hepatitis A:

  • Immune globulin – A preparation of antibodies that is given both before anticipated exposure to the hepatitis A virus and soon after exposure.
  • Hepatitis A vaccine – The vaccine consists of killed hepatitis A virus that stimulates the body’s natural immune system. After the vaccine is given, the body makes antibodies that protect a person against the virus. Please consult your doctor if you have any questions about its use

Self Help –

Vccination for –

  • Children at age 1 year (12 – 23 months)
  • Travelers to countries where hepatitis A is prevalent; they should receive the hepatitis A vaccine at least 2 weeks prior to departure.
  • Men who have sex with other men
  • Users of illegal drugs, especially those who inject drugs
  • People with chronic liver diseases, such as hepatitis B or C

Others who may benefit include –

  • People who have chronic liver disease
  • People who receive clotting factor concentrate to treat hemophilia or other clotting disorders
  • Military personnel
  • Employees of child day-care centers
  • People who care for institutionalized patients

Frequent handwashing after using the bathroom or changing diapers is important for preventing transmission of hepatitis A. International travelers to developing countries should use bottled or boiled water for brushing teeth and drinking, and avoid ice cubes. It is best to eat only well-cooked heated food and to peel raw fruits and vegetables.

Alternative Treatment

Reishi mushroom herbal remedy has shown favorable results in the natural treatment of Hepatitis A.

Milk Thistle – An important natural treatment for Hepatitis A is the use of a herbal remedy known as Milk Thistle. Silymarin health supplement found in milk thistles protects the liver by preventing toxins from entering the cells. They are strong antioxidants and reduce damage to liver cells.

Licorice – Hepatitis patients are known to experience relief with the use of liquorice root as part of natural treatment for Hepatitis A.

Flavonoids – Some studies reveal that one particular herb, Uncaria gambier, containing a flavonoid known as catechin, can be an effective diet supplement for Hepatitis A.

 Natural antibiotics, colloidal silver, and olive leaf capsules, are considered beneficial in cases of Hepatitis.

Zell oxygen natural health supplements for Hepatitis A are known to strengthen the immune system.

Dietary supplements with Zinc (30-50mg), vitamin C (1000 mg), and vitamin E (800 mg) are also recommended as natural remedies for Hepatitis.

Sterols and sterolins health supplements for Hepatitis A are prescribed to strengthen the immune system.

Black Seed Oil improves liver function and associated digestive problems. The warming and bitter qualities seem to penetrate into blockages in the body and rapidly instigate normalisation.  Black Seed has an unprecedented strengthening effect upon the immune system, and works in a host of other ways to promote optimum health and well being.

Body Cleansing

  • Bowel cleanse with parasite cleanse
  • Dental cleanup (if you can afford it)
  • Kidney Cleanse and
  • Liver cleanse

Psychotherapy and Spiritual Therapy


Reference –