Treatment Of Hepatitis

Treatment of hepatitis varies based on the kind of hepatitis whether it is acute or chronic, severity of disease, and cause.

Updated: June 16, 2022

Hepatitis is inflammation of the liver tissue with yellow discoloration of the skin and whites of the eyes, poor appetite, vomiting, tiredness, abdominal pain, or diarrhea. Hepatitis may be temporary (acute) or long term (chronic) depending on the duration it lasts. It is commonly caused by a viral infection. But there are other possible causes of hepatitis which include autoimmune hepatitis and hepatitis that occurs as a secondary result of medications, drugs, toxins, and alcohol. When your body makes antibodies against your liver tissue, autoimmune hepatitis is developed.

Treatment of hepatitis varies based on the kind of hepatitis whether it is acute or chronic, severity of disease, and cause. 

Treatment Of Hepatitis A:

Hepatitis A is a short-term illness and rarely requires hospitalization. Bed rest is recommended if symptoms cause discomfort. If you experience vomiting or diarrhea, treatment includes providing intravenous (IV) hydration and maintaining adequate nutrition.

Hepatitis A vaccine is available to prevent this infection. Children can get the vaccination between 12 and 18 months of age. It is a series of two vaccines. Vaccination for hepatitis A is also available for adults and can be combined with the hepatitis B vaccine.

This disease generally does not progress to a chronic state. Fulminant hepatic failure can occur rarely when you have hepatitis A virus which can cause liver failure. The elderly and those who had pre-existing liver disease, especially hepatitis C can have a liver failure because of this virus which can lead to death.
In these cases, more aggressive supportive therapy and a liver transplant may be necessary.


Treatment Of Hepatitis B:


Acute hepatitis B does not require specific treatment. But in some rare and more severe acute cases, treatment can be done with antiviral therapy similar to that used in cases of chronic hepatitis B. These rare conditions can be a combination of the age factor and clinical signs of ascites, peripheral edema, and hepatic encephalopathy, and laboratory signs of hypoglycemia, prolonged prothrombin time, low serum albumin, and very high serum bilirubin.

Chronic hepatitis B is treated with antiviral medications which will be continued for several months or years. Treatment for chronic hepatitis B also requires regular medical evaluations and monitoring to determine if the virus is responding to treatment.

Hepatitis B can be prevented with vaccination. For all newborns baby, the hepatitis B vaccine is recommended. The series of three vaccines is usually given over the first six months of childhood. The vaccine is also recommended for all healthcare and medical personnel.


Treatment Of Hepatitis C:

As compared to hepatitis A and B, progression to chronic hepatitis C is much more common. Both acute and chronic forms of hepatitis C can be treated by antiviral medications. People who develop chronic hepatitis C are usually treated with a combination of antiviral drug therapies. Further testing may be required to determine the best form of treatment. People who develop cirrhosis that is scarring of the liver or liver disease as a result of chronic hepatitis C may require a liver transplant. There is no vaccination for hepatitis C at present.


Treatment Of Hepatitis D:

Hepatitis D is difficult to treat and at present, there are no antiviral medications that exist for the treatment of hepatitis DHepatitis D can be prevented by getting the vaccination for hepatitis B, as the reason for hepatitis D to develop is infection with hepatitis B.


Treatment Of Hepatitis E:

Similar to hepatitis A, people with this type of infection are often advised to get adequate rest, drink plenty of fluids, get enough nutrients, and avoid alcohol. The infection is often acute and usually resolves on its own. However, pregnant women who develop this infection require hospitalization along with close monitoring and care.


Treatment Of Alcoholic Hepatitis:

Treatment of alcoholic hepatitis is to make the person quit alcohol first. Reversal of liver disease and longer life are possible for those who completely stop taking alcohol. Treatment should include nutritional and psychosocial evaluation along with psychotherapy and other treatment programs. Available treatment options include pentoxifylline (PTX), which is a nonspecific TNF inhibitor, corticosteroids, such as prednisone or prednisolone (CS), corticosteroids with N-acetylcysteine (CS with NAC), and corticosteroids with pentoxifylline (CS with PTX). Severe alcoholic hepatitis is difficult to treat. 

Treatment Of Autoimmune Hepatitis:

In the early treatment of autoimmune hepatitis, Corticosteroids can be used. Azathioprine, a medicine that suppresses the immune system, can be used with or without steroids.


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