Misdiagnosis of Hepatitis

Undiagnosed Hepatitis: The biggest diagnostic problem with hepatitis is that the disease is mild or even completely without symptoms in some people. Such people may have the disease and be unaware of it, not being diagnosed. These people can even become asymptomatic carriers of the disease, spreading it to others (e.g. by sexual or blood contact). The two main forms where chronic undiagnosed disease can occur are:

  • Hepatitis B virus (HBV or “HepB”). Spread by sexual contact or blood-related transmission.
  • Hepatitis C virus (HCV or “HepC”). Spread by blood transmission.

Diagnosing All Types of Hepatitis: There are many causes of hepatitis and types of hepatitis. The contagious viral types are not the only ones. Diagnosis must consider all causes and types:

  • Viral Hepatitis. Admittedly, still the most common type: Hepatitis A (fecal-oral contagion), Hepatitis B (sexual/blood/fluids), Hepatitis C (blood), Hepatitis D, Hepatitis E, Hepatitis F, Hepatitis G, and the generic term Hepatitis X.
  • Less common viral forms of hepatitis: Cytomegalovirus, Epstein-Barr virus.
  • Autoimmune Hepatitis
  • Bacterial Hepatitis
  • Parasitic Hepatitis (e.g. “liver flukes”)
  • Poisons and toxins. The liver is the organ in the body that often processes toxins out of the blood, and hence is often damaged or inflamed by toxins, chemicals, poisons, etc.
  • Hemochromatosis.
  • Medications (side-effects; drug-interactions). Some medications may have an effect on the liver in some people.

Undiagnosed Complications: People with chronic forms of hepatitis are at particularly high risk of long-term complications. This also applies to the undiagnosed carriers of HepB and HepC, who can unknowingly be developing the long-term complications over time.

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