Hepatitis in Northwest Arkansas

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There are an estimated 290 million individuals living in the world who do not know that they have viral hepatitis. Hepatitis, according to its most basic description, describes inflammation of the liver. The most common types include hepatitis A, hepatitis B, and hepatitis C. The three types of hepatitis mentioned here are labeled in reference to the strain of virus that is the reason for liver inflammation. Each single variation of viral hepatitis can practically be deemed a unique disease, since each variation of infection responds to distinct treatment approaches. If you or a family member has been diagnosed with, or may already have, hepatitis, reach out to GI Alliance of Arkansas. Our experienced GI specialists treat individuals with hepatitis in Arkansas.

Hepatitis A (HAV) is a very contagious form of hepatitis that frequently affects people who consume foods or beverages that have been around fecal waste or other individuals who have the virus. Albeit quite infectious, it is not as dangerous compared to the other forms. HAV can be prevented with a vaccine and can be treated by a medical provider.

Individuals with hepatitis A may have a range of signs or symptoms, such as:

  • Pain in the abdominal area
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Loss of appetite
  • Dark-colored urine (Jaundice)
  • Fever
  • Unintentional weight loss
  • Exhaustion
  • A yellowing of the skin and/or eyes

The standard treatment approach for HAV is to rest, drink fluids, and avoid alcoholic drinks. The majority of cases of hepatitis A will resolve on their own. To prevent HAV, you can request a hepatitis A vaccination from your physician or our Arkansas gastroenterology facility.

Hepatitis B (HBV) is a more concerning variation of viral hepatitis. Without treatment, it can possibly lead to liver cancer and liver failure. If adults get HBV, their bodies can often fight it off within a few months. When the virus has diminished, you become immune. If people contract HBV during birth, however, the condition will not likely go away on its own. HBV is most often transmitted through blood, sexual fluids, saliva, using a contaminated needle, or if a person's mother had HBV during pregnancy.

Some of the common symptoms and signs of hepatitis B are as follows:

  • Fever
  • Loss of appetite
  • Jaundice
  • Light-colored stool
  • Pain in the abdominal area
  • Vomiting
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Aching joints

If you have possibly been infected by HBV, we encourage you to see a medical provider or contact GI Alliance of Arkansas as soon as possible. The quicker you get care, the better for your health and wellness. Your healthcare practitioner will probably administer a hepatitis B vaccination and other antiviral drugs.

Hepatitis C (HCV) is generally spread through bodily fluids (including blood) that can seriously injure your liver. HCV can develop into two separate variations: acute hepatitis C or chronic hepatitis C.

  • Acute hepatitis C is less severe and generally takes six months to subside, after which the majority of individuals' natural immune response will defeat the virus.
  • Chronic hepatitis C occurs when a person's natural defenses cannot ward off the viral infection within the first six months and the virus causes infection in the body for a longer amount of time. This could cause lasting health concerns, such as cirrhosis of the liver and liver cancer.

The most common signs and symptoms of hepatitis C consist of:

  • Bruising easily
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Confusion
  • Appetite loss
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Itchy skin
  • Bleeding easily
  • Swelling in the legs
  • Pain in the abdominal area
  • Jaundice (yellow skin and eyes, dark urine)
  • Joint pain
  • Extreme exhaustion
  • Slurred speech
  • Clay-colored stool

The treatment cure rate of hepatitis C is higher than 90%. Common treatment options for HCV consist of:

  • Liver transplant (chronic HCV)
  • Antiviral drugs
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The best way to avoid contracting hepatitis A or B is to receive a vaccine for the viral infection. Medical professionals advise having children undergo vaccination for hepatitis A somewhere between 12 months and 23 months of age, but individuals can also have the vaccine at any age after that. Vaccination for hepatitis B is typically provided to newborns, but individuals can get the vaccine at any stage in life. There is no vaccine for hepatitis C.

Additional healthy ways to avoid contracting hepatitis are listed below:

  • When traveling, learn whether the place you are visiting has elevated rates of hepatitis infection
  • Make certain any needles you use are properly sterilized, such as when getting piercings or if using illicit drugs
  • Always wash your hands after using the restroom or coming into contact with any bodily fluids
  • Avoid consuming uncooked meat and unclean food or water, and eating food from street vendors
  • Do not share personal hygiene products, such as razors, toothbrushes, etc.
  • Use protection when having sex

Hepatitis is capable of causing serious medical conditions, including liver failure and liver cancer — but it is treatable with help from a gastrointestinal specialist. If you are having any bothersome GI signs or symptoms, like those discussed above, call GI Alliance of Arkansas promptly. As a skilled, board-certified team of gastroenterologists, we endeavor to deliver exceptional, patient-centered services. For further details about the treatment approaches available for all types of hepatitis in Arkansas, speak with our caring support staff today.

Amber at the Dallas office was very helpful and nice. I finally got my questions answered. I had been passed around by other employees and Washington Regional. Amber took control, told me when she would get back to me. She got back to me that afternoon. Thanks Amber for your caring and go get it done attitude. We need more people like you Best Regards Nancy Reynolds

N.R. Google

Very caring staff. Good information and communication before and after procedure.

J.S. Google

Staff who actually sees you in a timely manner!! Cheryl Walsh is knowledgeable and caring. Thanks!

L.A. Google

Dr Thomas has treated my gastro enterology problems for several years and has cured various problems. He is first class.

J.J. Google

Very knowledgeable and professional, as always. Procedure was a breeze.

K.C. Google


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