The cause of hepatitis is infection with a virus that belongs to a separate group of hepatnaviruses. Hepatitis B is still one of the most widespread diseases in the world - about four million cases of infection are recorded annually. How is hepatitis B virus transmitted?
You should know that the hepatitis B virus is very stable and persists for a long time in the external environment. It is transmitted by the hematogenous route - through blood. Infection occurs when the patient's blood enters the body of a healthy person.
Hepatitis can be transmitted through piercing and cutting objects - shaving blades, manicure sets, needles - when using tools that have not been properly treated. It should be remembered that in a dried blood stain - for example, on the tip of a needle or a razor blade - the virus can persist for about seven days.
Based on this, we can say that the places of "high risk" are hairdressing, as well as tattoo and piercing parlors. A special risk group includes people who inject drugs.
Unfortunately, there are cases of hepatitis B infection in hospitals. For example, blood transfusion from a sick donor can also cause infection.
This disease can be sexually transmitted. With sexual contact with a patient with hepatitis, the likelihood of transmitting the virus is approximately 30%.
Another way of transmission of the virus is from mother to child. Infection can occur both during pregnancy and during childbirth. Unfortunately, the risk of chronic hepatitis in children born to mothers carrying the virus is quite high.
At the same time, despite the fact that the virus is also present in the breast milk of an infected mother, it does not pose a threat to the child. Breastfeeding is permitted.
Infection with hepatitis B through everyday contact is theoretically possible, but in practice it is very unlikely. The virus is present in tears, saliva and other secretions of sick people, but its transmission is possible only through direct contact with damaged mucous membranes or the skin of another person. Even in this case, the risk of infection is very small.
Therefore, it is generally accepted that this virus is not transmitted by household contact.
Vaccination is recommended to prevent contracting the disease. The vaccine, administered according to a certain scheme, will reliably protect your body from the hepatitis B virus. Immunity is maintained for at least 8-10 years.