Hepatitis is a viral infection that causes inflammation of the liver. Hepatitis is generally caused by one of three viruses:

  • Hepatitis A
  • Hepatitis B
  • Hepatitis C

Hepatitis A is most the common form of hepatitis affecting children. This form is caused by the hepatitis A virus, which lives in the stools of infected patients. Typically, hepatitis A only causes a mild and short-term infection and does not lead to chronic liver disease.

Hepatitis B, caused by the hepatitis B virus, can lead to chronic liver disease and liver cancer. Hepatitis B usually occurs in adults between 20 and 49 years old. A hepatitis B vaccine has been available since 1982 to prevent contracting the infection. 15 to 25% of non-vaccinated patients with chronic liver disease die from hepatitis B.

Hepatitis C spreads upon contact with an affected person’s blood. Hepatitis C infections can lead to chronic liver disease and it’s the leading cause of liver transplants in the United States.

Hepatitis symptoms include:

  • Fatigue
  • Vomiting
  • Fever
  • Abdominal pain
  • Jaundice (yellowish color of the skin and eyes)
  • Dark urine

Hepatitis is a serious side effect of Ketek, a prescription medication used to treat pneumonia.

If you would like to learn more about hepatitis, or if Ketek use may have caused you or a loved one to develop hepatitis, contact one of our hepatitis attorneys today for a confidential and free case evaluation.

Published November 17, 2011 by