Hepatitis is an inflammation of the liver, and it’s often caused by a viral infection. In the United States, the most common types of viral hepatitis are hepatitis
A, hepatitis B and hepatitis C. However, 9 out of 10 of people with hepatitis don’t know they have it. This creates the possibility
for millions of people to spread the infection to others without knowing, or to develop fatal liver cancer.
Here are four ways that hepatitis B and hepatitis C are commonly spread:
Sharing contaminated equipment used to inject drugs
Receiving blood transfusions
During childbirth from mother to infant
Sharing razors or toothbrushes
Tattooing or body piercing done without adequately sterilized equipment
The hepatitis B virus can also be spread through sexual contact and having unprotected sex with an infected person.
If you think you could be at risk for either hepatitis B or C, it is important to get tested. If you are unsure of your status, please talk to your primary care physician. Visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or World Hepatitis Alliance websites for the latest information on global efforts to eliminate hepatitis.