Frequently asked questions for Freeze-dried Live Attenuated Hepatitis A Vaccine
Freeze-dried Live Attenuated Hepatitis A Vaccine
Q. What is hepatitis A?Hepatitis A is a highly contagious liver infection caused by the hepatitis A virus. It can range from a mild illness lasting a few weeks to a severe illness lasting several months. Although rare, hepatitis A can cause death in some people. Consult your doctor immediately if you think you have symptoms of hepatitis A infection.
Q. How is hepatitis A spread?Hepatitis A usually spreads when a person unknowingly ingests the virus from objects, food or drinks which are contaminated by small, undetected amounts of stool from an infected person. Hepatitis A can also spread from close personal contact with an infected person such as through sex or caring for someone who is ill. Contamination of food or water is more likely to occur in countries where hepatitis A is common and in areas where there are poor sanitary conditions or poor personal hygiene.
Q. How safe is Freeze-dried Live Attenuated Hepatitis A Vaccine?Freeze-dried Live Attenuated Hepatitis A Vaccine is safe and well tolerated. The vaccines have undergone years of testing before being licensed by the health authorities and remain under continuous monitoring for safety. Side effects with Freeze-dried Live Attenuated Hepatitis A Vaccine are mild to moderate in intensity and commonly include pain, swelling and redness at the injection site and headache.
Q. When should Freeze-dried Live Attenuated Hepatitis A Vaccine be given?Freeze-dried Live Attenuated Hepatitis A Vaccine is usually given as a single initial injection. After that a second dose is given 6 to 12 months later. Two doses can help you protect from getting an infection for at least 20 years. Persons who are travelling should preferably take the initial dose of the medicine at least 2 weeks before leaving, although it can be given up to the day of your departure, if needed. However, it would be best to consult your doctor regarding the use of medicine.
Q. I think I have been exposed to hepatitis A. What should I do?If you think you have been exposed to hepatitis A, consult your doctor immediately. Your doctor will decide what is best for you, based on your age and overall health. If you were recently exposed to hepatitis A virus and have not been vaccinated against hepatitis A, you might benefit from an injection of either hepatitis A vaccine or immune globulin. However, the vaccine or immune globulin are only effective if given within the first 2 weeks after exposure.
Q. Is Hepatitis A infection fatal or life-threatening?Hepatitis A infection usually does not cause liver disease. However, in some cases, it may lead to acute liver failure which can be life-threatening.
Q. Is hepatitis A curable?No, there's currently no cure for hepatitis A, but it normally gets better on its own within a couple of months. However, it is better to consult a doctor if you think you are exposed to hepatitis A virus to rule out any other serious conditions that have similar symptoms.
Q. Is Hepatitis A infection contagious?Yes, Hepatitis A virus infection is contagious.
Q. What is Post Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP)?Post Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP) refers to trying to prevent or treat a disease after an exposure. For hepatitis A, postexposure prophylaxis is an injection of either hepatitis A vaccine or immune globulin. However, the vaccine or immune globulin are only effective in preventing hepatitis A if given within the first 2 weeks after exposure.
Q. I had hepatitis A in the past, can I get it again?No. Once you recover from hepatitis A, you develop antibodies that protect you from the virus for life. An antibody is a substance found in the blood which is produced by the body in response to a virus. Antibodies protect the body from disease by attaching to the virus and destroying it.
Q. How long does hepatitis A virus survive outside the body?The hepatitis A virus can survive for months outside the body. However, the virus can get destroyed at high temperatures, such as boiling or cooking food/liquids for at least 1 minute at 185°F (85°C), although freezing temperatures do not have any effect on it.
Q. Does Freeze-dried Live Attenuated Hepatitis A Vaccine cause fever?Yes, mild fever may occur after administering Freeze-dried Live Attenuated Hepatitis A Vaccine. Contact your doctor if your fever worsens or does not go away.
Q. Is Freeze-dried Live Attenuated Hepatitis A Vaccine necessary?Although not mandatory, Freeze-dried Live Attenuated Hepatitis A Vaccine is recommended if you're travelling to countries where there are poor levels of sanitation and hygiene, and cases of hepatitis A are common.