Hepatitis B

What is Hepatitis?

“Hepatitis” refers to inflammation of the liver. Liver is a vital organ that processes nutrients, filters the blood, and fights infections. When the liver is inflamed or damaged, its function can be affected.1 Heavy alcohol use, toxins, some medications, and certain medical conditions can cause hepatitis. However, hepatitis is most often caused by a virus.1

What is Hepatitis B?

Hepatitis B can be a serious liver disease that results from infection with the Hepatitis B virus, called HBV for short.1

Acute Hepatitis B refers to a short-term infection that occurs within the first 6 months after someone is infected with the virus. The infection can range in severity from a mild illness with few or no symptoms to a serious condition requiring hospitalization.1

Chronic Hepatitis B refers to a lifelong infection with the Hepatitis B virus. Up to 90% of infants infected with the Hepatitis B virus will develop a chronic infection. In contrast, about 5% of adults will develop chronic Hepatitis B. Over time, chronic Hepatitis B can cause serious health problems, including liver damage, cirrhosis, liver cancer, and even death.1

How common is Hepatitis B infection in India?

Globally, approximately 240 million people have been infected worldwide with hepatitis B Virus (HBV). India has approximately HBV carrier rate of 3.0% with a high prevalence rate in the tribal population. With a population of more than 1.25 billion, India has more than 37 million HBV carriers and contributes a large proportion of this HBV burden.2

What causes Hepatitis B?

The hepatitis B virus causes hepatitis B. The hepatitis B virus spreads through contact with an infected person’s blood, semen, or other body fluids. Contact can occur by3

  • Being born to a mother with hepatitis B
  • Having unprotected sex with an infected person
  • Sharing drug needles or other drug materials with an infected person
  • Getting an accidental stick with a needle that was used on an infected person
  • Being tattooed or pierced with tools that were used on an infected person and weren’t properly sterilized, or cleaned in a way that destroys all viruses and other microbes
  • Having contact with the blood or open sores of an infected person
  • Using an infected person’s razor, toothbrush, or nail clippers

What are the symptoms of Hepatitis B Infection?

After the virus enters the body, there is an incubation period lasting 1.5 to 6 months (average 4 months) until illness begins. During the acute phase (first 6 months after infection) most persons have no symptoms or might experience a mild illness. Symptoms of acute HBV infection, when present, may include:4,5

How is Hepatitis B treated?

For those with acute Hepatitis B, doctors usually recommend rest, adequate nutrition, fluids, and close medical monitoring. Some people may need to be hospitalized. People living with chronic Hepatitis B should be evaluated for liver problems and monitored on a regular basis. Treatments are available that can slow down or prevent the effects of liver disease.1

Who is at the risk of Hepatitis B Infection?3,4

The hepatitis B virus causes hepatitis B. The hepatitis B virus spreads through contact with an infected person’s blood, semen, or other body fluids. Contact can occur by3

  • Injecting drug users
  • Hemodialysis patients
  • Health care and public safety workers who may have contact with blood
  • People having sex with an HBV-infected partner
  • Men who have sex with men
  • Those living in the same household with an HBV-infected person
  • Travelers to places where hepatitis B infection is common who will have extended, close contact with the local population

How would I Know if I have Hepatitis B?

Doctors diagnose hepatitis B based on your medical and family history, a physical exam, and blood tests. If you have hepatitis B, your doctor may perform additional tests to check your liver like transient elastography, a special ultrasound of your liver & liver biopsy3

Can Hepatitis B be prevented?

Yes. The best way to prevent Hepatitis B is by getting vaccinated. The Hepatitis B vaccine is typically given as a series of 3 shots over a period of 6 months. The entire series is needed for long-term protection.1

Get Yourself tested

Please note: Your Doctor is the best person to guide you. The information in this educational brochure doesn’t substitute the medical advice provided by your Doctor. Always ask your Doctor or a qualified health provider if you have any query about your medical condition.


The content published herein is purely for the purposes of information and enhancement of knowledge regarding Hepatitis. Any reference and/ or link to any third-party does not constitute an endorsement or warranty by Mylan. While every effort had been made to ensure that the information contained herein is accurate and up-to-date, Mylan does not make any representation or assume any responsibility for the accuracy of any information disseminated through the content detailed herein and shall not be held liable for any error, omission and consequences – legal or otherwise, arising out of the use of any information provided herein and expressly disclaims any liabilities arising therefrom.

Please consult your doctor to know more on Hepatitis. Your doctor is the best person to guide you. The information provided herein does not substitute medical advice provided by your doctor.


  1. 1. CDC Hepatitis B – General Informations. Available from Accessed on 25th July 2018.
  2. 2. Pankaj Puri et al. Tackling the Hepatitis B Disease Burden in India. J Clin Exp Hepatol. 2014 Dec; 4(4):312–319.Published online 2014 Dec 15. doi: 10.1016/.j.jceh.2014.12.004.
  3. 3. U.S. Department of health and Human services. SAN FRANCISCO DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC HEALTH.DISEASE PREVENTION & CONTROL. Available from Accessed on 25th July 2018.
  5. 5. (2018). Hep B Patient Ed. [online] Available at: [Accessed 16 Aug. 2018]

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