Liver, the largest internal organ and the most complex. Performs over 500 functions, most of which still puzzle us today. But the magic word here is blood, yes about 10% of all our blood is present in the liver at all times. This 1 kilo of goodness, the liver, is the target of the Hepatitis B virus and it doesn’t stop until the liver is in shambles.
Hepatitis B, the worst of all liver diseases one could contract. A disease with its claws so deep in our world that about 600,000 people succumb to it each year! So, what is Hepatitis B? Well quite simply put, it is the beginning of the end of your liver function. People who contract Hepatitis B via its virus HBV (Hepatitis B virus), exhibit mild symptoms at first while the virus makes itself comfortable. Once it lays its roots, the virus attacks the liver and within 6 months of contracting it, the victim has what is known as chronic Hepatitis B.
Chronic Hepatitis B is a karmic cycle of pain. It can take a fairly horrific turn for the victim with the eventual onset of liver cirrhosis or in some cases, liver cancer (hepatocellular carcinoma). Cirrhosis is a condition wherein, healthy liver tissue is replaced by what is known as scar tissue. This abnormal tissue blocks blood flow to and from the liver, barring it from functioning. Chronic simply means recurring or unending and that’s what it really is. Symptoms go from mild to unbearable. In advanced cases, when the liver is unable to detoxify the body, coma is a possibility. Besides this, jaundice, kidney failure and an enlarged spleen is common in chronic Hep B patients.
Contraction of Hepatitis B takes effect once an unsuspecting person comes in contact with the bodily fluids of an infected individual. Through blood transfusions, infected syringes and from a suffering mother to her baby during childbirth are all other viable ways of procuring Hepatitis B.
Adults tend to survive in most cases though, due to rapid identification and medication. Little children are not so lucky with more than 50% succumbing to it. Infants almost never survive.
The dark clouds part once, the vaccine is administered. The Hepatitis B vaccine is a miracle drug and has the potential to flip this disease on its head. Once taken, the hepatitis B virus is kept from attacking the liver altogether! A mere 200 bucks is a small amount to pay for your baby’s life, don’t you think? The vaccine is conferred once when your baby is 6 weeks old and then again at 6 months and that’s it, your baby is sorted for life. Your baby will never have to suffer through Hep B.
Hepatitis B is a problem, getting slowly out of hand. It is in your hands, mummies to stop it, fresh in its tracks. If your little one is to live long and healthy, you need to steer clear of Hep B. Take a step in the right direction today and have your baby take up the Hepatitis B vaccine. Happy Parenting!