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. Hepatitis A usually spreads when a person unknowingly ingests the virus from objects, food, or drinks 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.

The best way to prevent hepatitis A is through vaccination with the hepatitis A vaccine.

The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) recommends hepatitis A vaccination for the following people:

  • All children at age 1 year
  • Travelers to countries where hepatitis A is common
  • Family and caregivers of adoptees from countries where hepatitis A is common
  • Men who have sexual encounters with other men
  • Users of recreational drugs, whether injected or not
  • People with chronic or long-term liver disease, including hepatitis B or hepatitis C
  • People with clotting-factor disorders
  • People with direct contact with others who have hepatitis A
  • Any person wishing to obtain immunity (protection)

For more information:

Resources:

Postexposure Prophylaxis Recommendations:


Contact the Georgia Viral Hepatitis Program:

Georgia Department of Public Health
Epidemiology Program - Viral Hepatitis
2 Peachtree Street NW, 14th Floor
Atlanta, Georgia  30303
Phone: (404) 657-2588
Fax:  (404) 657-2608

 

 

Last updated 11/15/2018