Hepatitis B

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Hepatitis B

This is a virus that is very infectious; it can cause a serious, but short-term illness or serious and long-term illness. 

How you get it:  

  • Unprotected penetrative sex (vaginal or anal), sharing contaminated needles or razors
  • A vaccination is available which can prevent someone getting Hepatitis B. The injection is recommended for those who are at greater risk including: men who have sex with men, health care workers, injecting drug users and people who work in the sex industry. 

Symptoms:  

  • Often there are no symptoms, but they can include feeling tired, unwell, sick or becoming jaundiced (yellowing skin). 

Treatment:  

  • No specific treatment for an acute illness – most people will make a full recovery. There are some treatments for chronic illness which may help. 

If it’s not treated:  

  • It can cause permanent liver disease. 
  • N.B Hepatitis C is not an STI, but a virus that attacks the liver and is often passed on by sharing needles and/or blood. 
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