Viral Hepatitis refers to a group of viral infections that affect the liver. The most common types are Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, and Hepatitis C.
Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, and Hepatitis C are diseases caused by three different viruses. Although each can cause similar symptoms, they have different modes of transmission and can affect the liver differently. Hepatitis A appears only as an acute or newly occurring infection and does not become chronic. People with Hepatitis A usually improve without treatment. Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C can also begin as acute infections, but in some people, the virus remains in the body, resulting in chronic disease and long-term liver problems. There are vaccines to prevent Hepatitis A and B; however, there is not one for Hepatitis C. Recommendations for testing depend on many different factors and on the type of hepatitis.
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Hepatitis B virus (HBV) vaccination is recommended for all infants, older children and adolescents who were not vaccinated previously, and adults at risk for HBV infection.
Hepatitis A vaccination is recommended for all children starting at age 1 year, travelers to certain countries, and others at risk.
CDC recommends that health care providers test everyone for HIV between the ages of 13 and 64 at least once as part of routine health care. Talk to a healthcare provider about getting tested.
HIV is spread through unprotected sex and drug-injecting behaviors, so people who engage in these behaviors should get tested more often.
You can arm yourself with basic information about STDs: How are these diseases spread? How can you protect yourself? What are the treatment options? Read these STD Fact Sheets to find out.
People born from 1945 through 1965 are 5x more likely to have Hepatitis C. While anyone can get Hepatitis C, more than 75% of people with Hepatitis C were born during these years. That’s why CDC recommends that anyone born from 1945 through 1965 get tested for Hepatitis C.
Knowing you have Hepatitis C can help you make important decisions about your health. Successful treatments can eliminate the virus from the body and prevent liver damage, cirrhosis, and even liver cancer.
Getting tested is the only way to know your HIV status. If you are HIV-positive, you can start getting treated, which can improve your health, prolong your life, and greatly lower your chance of spreading HIV to others.
Getting HIV tested can give you some important lifesaving information and can help keep you—and others—safe.