Published Online: April 9, 1997


The Hows and Whys of Hepatitis A

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  • Hepatitis A usually is a mild liver infection that is transmitted either orally or through human waste, such as handling or consuming food or water from an infected food handler or a person with poor personal hygiene.
  • Symptoms include fever, fatigue, abdominal discomfort, loss of appetite, nausea, and jaundice. Less than 1 percent of all cases are fatal.
  • Those who are infected may not show symptoms for several weeks because of an incubation period, but post-exposure vaccinations with immune globulin can prevent the illness from developing if received within 14 days of exposure.

SOURCE: U.S. Department of Agriculture.

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