Viral Hepatitis

Viral hepatitis is caused by a virus that affects the liver. In the United States, the most common types of viral hepatitis are hepatitis A, hepatitis B, and hepatitis C.

Hepatitis B and hepatitis C infections can lead to chronic hepatitis infections, in which case individuals will remain infected. Chronic hepatitis can lead to liver disease and liver cancer. Most people with hepatitis B and hepatitis C infections remain asymptomatic (no symptoms) until the infection progresses and causes complications of the liver.

Transmission varies among the different types of viral hepatitis; however, symptoms are the same for all three types of hepatitis (A, B, and C). Not everyone will have symptoms when they are first infected, but symptoms of acute (newly acquired) hepatitis include:

  • Fever
  • Fatigue
  • Loss of appetite
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal pain
  • Headache
  • Diarrhea
  • Clay-colored stools
  • Joint or muscle pain
  • Dark urine
  • Jaundice (yellowing of the skin and eyes)

Hepatitis A and hepatitis B can be prevented through vaccination. There is currently no vaccine available to prevent hepatitis C.

Georgia Viral Hepatitis ECHO provides a virtual community learning platform for clinicians and public health personnel to access viral hepatitis specialist(s), discuss challenging cases, barriers, and solutions in managing viral hepatitis.

All Georgia physicians, laboratories, and other health care providers are required by law to report patients with notifiable diseases and conditions.

Contact the Georgia Viral Hepatitis Program:

Phone: (404) 657-2588

Fax: (404) 657-2608

Page updated 4/14/2023