Awareness, attention needed to combat hepatitis

Sunday, 29 Jul, 2018

Shifa International Hospital held an event in this connection.

The body said this ahead of the World Hepatitis Day (WHD) on 28, July.

"Without finding the undiagnosed and linking them to care, millions will continue to suffer, and lives will be lost".

This campaign has been launched to bring much-needed attention to the fact that millions of people are living with Viral Hepatitis unaware.

He urged all authorities concerned to take necessary measures to inspire the people to prevent the liver related diseases.

According to him, "Prior report suggested a prevalence of about 10-15 per cent risk in the Nigerian population, and some investigators have found high Hepatitis B prevalence among surgeons; as high as 26 per cent". As common as hepatitis C is, it's also known as a silent killer because it's a liver disease that rarely comes with a warning and symptoms often don't appear until the liver is severely damaged.

In Illinois, the number of reported cases of hepatitis C increased by 43 percent from 6,887 in 2006 to 9,838 in 2017. Acute infection spontaneously resolves in a minority of people, but the majority develop chronic hepatitis C that usually progresses over many years.

"Highly effective recombinant vaccines are now available. Increased injection safety in health facilities is likewise critical", Singh said. It is also given routinely to neonates as universal vaccination in many countries.

India started late with its Hepatitis B awareness and prevention strategy and is quickly trying to catch up. Hence, once again that screening is a part of management of hepatitis C. There are two large groups in India which are actually being screened: one is pregnant women, so nearly every pregnant woman is now undergoing screening for all 3 viruses Hepatitis B, C and HIV. For World Hepatitis Day this year, WHO's theme was: "Test. Treat. Hepatitis". 15%-20% of all chronic liver disease and hepatocellular cancer HCC in India are caused by HCV.

Approximately 399,000 people die each year from hepatitis C, mostly from cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma, and there is now no vaccine for hepatitis C, however, research in this area is ongoing. "Left untreated, these infections lead to liver cancer and cirrhosis, which together caused more than 1.3 million deaths in 2015 alone", it said in a statement.

During a World Hepatitis Day seminar here, Prof. Following on, the United Nations declared official recognition of this event in 2010.

"Viral hepatitis B and C are major health challenges, affecting 325 million people globally". Hepatitis B (HBV) and C (HCV) are viral infections which can cause chronic hepatitis and are the leading causes for hepatitis cirrhosis and cancer, thus creating a significant burden to healthcare systems due to the high morbidity/mortality and costs of treatment. World Hepatitis Day is a reminder to talk to your doctor, know your risks, and get tested to stay healthy.

As hepatitis C is a big menace for the country, a recent changein treatment to oral medications have revolutionized the treatment response of hepatitis C. Therefore, prompt diagnosis and treatment can bring about long lasting results.

Singh said health authorities in the region should deploy clear messaging tactics regarding signs and symptoms of hepatitis so that people can get tested and seek treatment and also how its spread can be prevented.