How does Hepatitis B affect liver health?
Hepatitis B is an infectious liver disease caused by the hepatitis B virus (HBV). HBV is one of the five viral types, other four being A, C, D and E. Occurrence of Hepatitis B can be acute or chronic depending on infection and body resistance.
Patients tend to experience symptoms like sickness, yellowish skin, tiredness, dark urine and abdominal pain. Chronic hepatitis B develops slowly. In most cases, symptoms go unnoticed unless complications develop to a bad state.
Hepatitis B is a highly contagious disease, which can spread through infected blood and certain other bodily fluids. Transmission of the virus can occur through infected blood, contaminated needles, and intimate contact or by any other item with traces of infected fluid.
How HBV affects Liver health?
The hepatitis B virus does not directly damage the liver, instead it triggers certain body reactions that lead to inflammation of the liver. HBV reproduces itself in the liver cells, but that alone is not the reason for liver damage. Body opposes the increasing number of virus, which causes the inflammation and may seriously injure liver walls.
Outcomes of the HBV is determined by the immune response of the body. When the body encounters virus growth in the liver, it triggers an immune reaction to destroy the viral infection.
Individuals with stronger immune response, mostly get rid of the virus and recover well. However, these patients may also develop more severe liver injury and symptoms due to their strong immune response.
While a strong immunity reaction can adversely affect the liver, a weaker immune response results in less liver injury and fewer symptoms. A weaker body reaction leaves the patent with higher risk of developing chronic hepatitis B.
Chronic HBV infection can pose serious complications in its patients, such as:
Scarring of the liver (cirrhosis)
Inflammation followed by hepatitis B infection can lead to extensive liver scarring condition (cirrhosis)
A patient dealing with chronic hepatitis B infection is mostly at high risk of liver cancer.
In such conditions, the vital functions of the liver cease to work leaving the patient with no other treatment except liver transplant.
In some cases patients may also develop kidney disease or inflammation of blood vessels.
To know more about viral Hepatitis B, visit our website at http://www.psrihospital.com/ or call us on +91-11-30611700.