Hepatitis B is a virus that can cause chronic infection, cirrhosis (scarring), and cancer of the liver. The virus is present in blood, semen, vaginal secretions, and breast milk. Individuals are encouraged to take all three doses of the vaccine to protect themselves against infection.

How is it spread? 

 

Hepatitis B is transmitted through unprotected anal, vaginal, and oral sex with an infected person; through contaminated needles or syringes; or from an infected mother to her new born during childbirth or breast-feeding. Hepatitis B is not transmitted through such causal contact as hugging, shaking hands, sharing food, using the same eating utensils, drinking from the same glass, sitting on public toilets, or touching door knobs.

What are the symptoms?

 

 

  • Flu-like feelings that don’t go away
  • Jaundice (yellow skin and whites of eyes, darker yellow urine and pale feces)
  • People may have no symptoms at all, but they can still pass on the hepatitis virus to others
How is it treated?

 

 

Acute hepatitis B usually goes away by itself and does not require medical treatment. If very severe, symptoms such as vomiting or diarrhea may require treatment to restore fluids and electrolytes.

How can infection be prevented?

 

 

There’s an effective hepatitis B vaccine, and a hepatitis A and B combo vaccine (click here for more information). Hepatitis B is transmitted by infected blood or semen entering your bloodstream thought activities like unprotected anal sex, sharing infected injecting equipment, toothbrushes or razors, oral sex, and tattooing and body piercing with unsterilized equipment. If you’re sexually active, sign-up for free STD testing reminders via email, text or both at WeAllTest.com. If We All Test, we can help eliminate syphilis and other STDs in our community.