- Hepatitis Pictures Slideshow: What Puts You at Risk
- Digestive Disease Myths
- Hepatitis Slideshow Pictures
- Patient Comments: Hepatitis A - Symptoms
- Find a local Gastroenterologist in your town
- Hepatitis A facts*
- What is hepatitis A?
- What is the liver?
- Who gets hepatitis A?
- How could I get hepatitis A?
- What are the symptoms of hepatitis A?
- How is hepatitis A diagnosed?
- How is hepatitis A treated?
- How can I avoid getting hepatitis A?
- What should I do if I think I have been exposed to the hepatitis A virus?
- Eating, Diet, and Nutrition
- Hope through Research
- For More Information
What is the liver?
The liver is an organ that does many important things. You cannot live without a liver.
- removes harmful chemicals from your blood
- fights infection
- helps digest food
- stores nutrients and vitamins
- stores energy
Who gets hepatitis A?
Anyone can get hepatitis A, but those more likely to are people who
- travel to developing countries
- live with someone who currently has an active hepatitis A infection
- use illegal drugs, including noninjection drugs
- have unprotected sex with an infected person
- provide child care
Also, men who have sex with men are more likely to get hepatitis A.
How could I get hepatitis A?
You could get hepatitis A through contact with an infected person's stool. This contact could occur by
- eating food made by an infected person who didn't wash his or her hands after using the bathroom
- drinking untreated water or eating food washed in untreated water
- placing a finger or object in your mouth that came into contact with an infected person's stool
- having close personal contact with an infected person, such as through sex or caring for someone who is ill
- You cannot get hepatitis A from
- being coughed or sneezed on by an infected person
- sitting next to an infected person
- hugging an infected person
A baby cannot get hepatitis A from breast milk.