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Hepatitis A

hepatitis a

Hepatitis A is a liver disease caused by the hepatitis A virus (HAV). Hepatitis A virus can infect anyone, but vaccines are available for long-term protection in persons 1 year of age and older. Good personal hygiene and proper sanitation can also help prevent the spread of hepatitis A.

Hepatitis A is most often spread by the fecal-oral route (an object contaminated with the stool of a person with hepatitis A is put into another person's mouth), or by swallowing food or water that contains the virus.

Hepatitis A vaccine is routinely recommended for all children at age 1 year, and for people who are at increased risk for infection, such as persons traveling to countries with high rates of hepatitis A, men who have sex with other men, street drug users, people who receive blood products to help with clots, and certain lab workers. The vaccine is also recommended for people who are at increased risk of complications from the hepatitis A illness, such as those who have chronic liver disease or have a compromised immune system.

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

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