The Hepatitis B vaccine is used to protect the human body from Hepatitis B virus (HPV). This disease is very contagious and can damage the liver completely if not treated on time. The administration of Hepatitis B vaccine is given in the form of a shot.
The Hepatitis B infection is said to be an opportunistic infection. This means that this type of disease can occur more frequently and at a faster rate in people with a weak immune system.
There are two phases in this type of infection-
In most cases, the symptoms of Hepatitis B may not be noticed within a month. The most common symptoms include-
Any of the above symptoms should be immediately evaluated and if diagnosed, the right Hepatitis B treatment should be implemented on the patient.
The infection is caused by Hepatitis B virus which can be found in blood and body fluids. The transmission of this virus can also take place through semen, vaginal discharge and blood, and can also pass from mother to the child at the time of delivery. Also, having unprotected sex and sharing needles increases the chance of developing this infection.
Outside the body, the virus can survive up to 7 days. During this time, without a Hepatitis B vaccination, a person can develop an infection.
To diagnose both chronic and acute infection, a blood test should be done. Also, screening can be done for patients who are at higher risk of developing such infection. Such patients include-
In case a woman develops HPV during pregnancy, the child should get a Hepatitis B vaccination and also Hepatitis B immune globulin after birth within 12-24 hours of time.
Before the Hepatitis B treatment stage, the doctor may carry out a series of blood tests-
Liver Function Test: On performing this test, the doctor can ascertain the condition of your liver and the enzymes it is producing. If the enzyme levels are high, it may indicate an inflamed or a damaged liver.
If a person is already immune against HPV, there is no need for a Hepatitis B vaccination. For someone who has not taken a Hepatitis B vaccine, following measures should be implemented-
Hepatitis B vaccination and immunoglobulin: If there is a doubt that you may have been exposed to HPV virus in the last 24 hours, talk to the doctor immediately. In case, you have not taken a Hepatitis B vaccine, the infection can still be prevented by taking a vaccine and an injection of HPV immune globulin.
For acute Hepatitis B patients, the recovery is possible with proper rest and keeping the body hydrated. People overcome acute infection on their own.
For chronic hepatitis, antiviral drugs are prescribed by the doctors.
If the infection is too severe and has damaged the liver, a liver transplant may also be needed.
The Hepatitis B vaccine dose varies depending on the age and the condition of an individual.
For infants and children (age 0-10 years), a 5 mcg Hepatitis B vaccine dose is administered. The next two hepatitis b vaccine booster is administered after 1 and 6 months respectively.
For adolescents (age 11-15 years), a 10 mcg dose is administered. The Hepatitis B vaccine booster is given after the fourth and sixth month respectively.
The Hepatitis B vaccine for adults (from 16 years onwards) is 10 mcg and is administered after one month and the sixth month respectively
For dialysis or pre-dialysis patients, the Hepatitis B vaccine for adults is 40 mcg and is administered after one and six months respectively.
Note that the Hepatitis B vaccine cost varies depending on the brand and service provider.