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Etymologically the term Hepatitis refers to any inflammation of the liver (hepa=liver; -titis=inflammation), and does not denote any specific ailment of the liver. Depending upon the intensity, hepatitis can be of two kinds – acute and chronic. It is said to be acute when the condition persists for a period of less than six months. Chronic hepatitis persists for a longer period of time. Hepatitis usually occurs due to some kind of viral infection. There are five detected kinds of viruses that cause hepatitis. They are named as the types A, B, C, D, and E, resulting in the five types of hepatitis, namely Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, Hepatitis D, and Hepatitis E.
Some common causes and risk factors
Hepatitis A and E are caused due to the intake of contaminated water or food. The other three forms, i.e. Hepatitis B, C, and D are usually caused by direct contact with the bodily fluid of an infected person. This may result from blood transfusion, or application of medical procedures using equipments already contaminated with the virus, etc. A major reason for spread of Hepatitis B is transmission through sexual contact. The usual symptoms of hepatitic attack are fatigue, pain or unease in abdominal area, diarrhea, loss of appetite, general yellowish tint on the skin and eyes. These are he general symptoms of hepatitis and not necessarily detectable in all cases of hepatitis.
How to mange it?
There is the old saying of prevention is better than cure. So, it is always advisable to get vaccinated against hepatitis. Though all forms of hepatitis cannot till date be vaccinated against, there is proper vaccination against Hepatitis B, the most lethal of all. In case one is under the attack of hepatitis, that person has to follow complete bed rest for a long time. More than medication is needed proper rest, accompanied by strict diet control. Spices and oils, that may put pressure on the liver, are a strict no no. Likewise, the patient should stay away from alcohol.