Preventing hepatitis B can reduce the risk of developing liver cancer

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Hepatitis B and liver cancer

In Africa, hepatitis B is the main cause of liver cancer, accounting for 80% of liver cancer cases. There is no specific treatment or cure for acute hepatitis B, and most adults progress to chronic diseases. The diagnosis of chronic hepatitis B is to pass certain blood marker tests that last 6 months or more after the initial infection. Although vaccination can prevent hepatitis B infection, some children have been infected with hepatitis B from birth or less than five years of age. Chronic infections are characterized by abdominal pain, yellow eyes, dark urine, or abnormal liver tests, but in some cases there may be no symptoms.

The main problem with chronic hepatitis B is the risk of developing cirrhosis and / or liver cancer. For those with chronic infections, taking medicine once a day can prevent the virus from multiplying. When the virus stops growing, the risk of liver cirrhosis and liver cancer is reduced. Hepatitis B can be prevented by vaccination and has been included as part of the Kenya Expanded Immunization Program (KEPI). Newborns need to be vaccinated at 6 weeks, 10 weeks and 14 weeks.

Adult vaccinations are completed three injections within six months. If the blood test shows that the immunity to hepatitis B is not at the required level, a booster dose is needed. For patients who receive a full dose, the vaccine can effectively prevent hepatitis infection, the effective rate is 80% to 100%.

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