Sunday, July 19, 2009

How do we get infected with hepatitis B?

alnect komputerThe risk is through unprotected sexual intercourse, an HIV infection in it, is well known. What many do not know: the causative agent of hepatitis B can be transmitted this way. Estimated that this country plays in more than two-thirds of new infections to sexual transmission of a role.

The only natural reservoir for hepatitis B virus is man. An infection through contact with animals is practically impossible. The transfer of pathogens carried by blood or other body fluids.

Transmission through blood - even the smallest quantities sufficient

Hepatitis B virus in the blood reach a high concentration. For this reason even the smallest quantities of blood in order to transmit the pathogen. The prerequisite is that the infected blood on injuries of the skin or mucous membranes in the body. It does not have to be a major violation of act, already small area of skin or mucous membrane can crack the entrance gate for others with hepatitis B infected blood.

Former canned risk blood is now considered safe

Particularly at risk for infection are those with allogeneic or with objects, in which allogeneic there may come into contact. A common transmission route for hepatitis B was until the early 1980s, treatment with blood or blood products in the form of blood transfusions. Through the introduction of specific tests for viral components in blood donors, the risk of infection significantly reduced.

Today, the residual risk that an undetected infectious blood donation is performed, at 1:250.000 and 1:500.000 estimated. Products, which contain components of blood plasma, are due to new testing and inactivation as virtually 100 percent virus free.

Source of infection contaminated injection equipment

Another frequent source of infection in the transmission of hepatitis B are infectious agents with blood contaminated items. Even the smallest quantities of blood sufficient for infection. Therefore, as the common use of syringes and needles by drug addicts to an infection if the instruments after each use is not carefully cleaned.

It is suspected that poorly cleaned cutlery for tattoos, piercing or Ohrlochstechen and operating medical and dental procedures, where health conditions are not met, a potential source of risk for infection with hepatitis B show.

What risk of dialysis patients?

A particularly vulnerable group for hepatitis B infections are dialysis patients who are due to renal disease undergoing regular Blutwäschen need. Thanks to new dialysis techniques, the use of disposable materials for single-use cleaning and elaborate procedures of this machine is also used in this medical field, the infection risk significantly lessened.
Today the most common: the sexual transmission

Not only blood, other body fluids such as semen, vaginal secretions, tears, saliva and the so-called Colostrum, the first milk after birth, which can contain viruses.

Here is the concentration of pathogens, however, are generally lower than in the blood. However, a contagion of these body fluids is possible. Estimated that even 60 to 70 percent, so the largest proportion of all new infections with hepatitis B, now on a sexual transmission, although sexual intercourse without the use of condoms is probably the biggest role.

Moreover, a possible contagion, when a contact of infected body fluids with broken skin or mucous comes about, eg within the family, in institutions for children or disabled Wohngemeinschaften.

Transmission during birth and pregnancy

Also the transmission of hepatitis B infection in newborns through the mother immediately during birth is possible. If a pregnant woman infected with hepatitis B is an infection of the child very likely. An infection of the child but can almost always be prevented, if immediately after the birth of a preventive vaccination of the child takes place.

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