Hepatitis A Test

Depending on the state where you reside, you may be required to complete a Hepatitis A test. It is becoming more common if you are offered a job in a field where you work with other people or with food. If you have a positive test, the medical provider may be required by law to report that information to the local health department.
If your Hepatitis A test is negative, then they can continue with the job offer. One contingency may be that you need to have a vaccine against this health issue if you haven’t had one in the past couple of years that can be verified.  If you are going to donate blood, you must pass a Hepatitis A test first.
The Test
The Hepatitis A test consists of a blood sample. If there are antibodies present that cause Hepatitis A, then it indicates you either have such an infection or you have had one in the past. This type of virus can be caused by feces of an infected person and passed to food or water. This is why washing your hands thoroughly is so important.
The test may show IgM anti-HAV antibodies which show an infection that may have occurred a few weeks ago. It can take up to a year after the infection for these antibodies to disappear. IgG anti-HAV antibodies show the Hepatitis A viral infection is present. They can show up as long as 12 weeks after the infection occurred.
Positive Test Results
If a person tests positive for Hepatitis A, then further testing may be necessary. The goal is to identify if there is a present and active infection or if it is a past and resolved infection that has been detected.
There isn’t any type of medication that can resolve Hepatitis A. Therefore, the treatment offered is in place to help with reducing the symptoms. The patient is also given advice to help reduce the risk of additional flare ups occurring. The biggest window of time for such flare ups to occur is within 6 months of the onset of the virus.
Your doctor will encourage you to keep track of what you eat. Many people with Hepatitis A have no appetite. Yet it is important that you continue to eat three meals per day so that you are able to stay healthy and to keep your immune system going as strong as it can.
Getting plenty of rest is also important. Drink plenty of water each day, and reduce the intake of caffeine. Beverages that have caffeine in them can increase the amount of time that the Hepatitis A virus remains in the body.
Avoid the use of medications that can be harsh on your liver. This includes over the counter products, prescription medications, and herbal products. Talk to your doctor about anything you take on a regular basis. The Hepatitis A virus isn’t going to create a long term illness. Once the infection has gone away, you won’t need to have any follow up testing done.

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