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Hepatitis A, B and C   You can have three forms of hepatitis: A, B and C. Hepatitis B is the most dangerous but all three have the same symptoms:

Tiredness
Nausea
Flu-like symptoms
Diarrhoea
Loss of appetite
Jaundice
Itchy Skin
Weight Loss

Hepatitis causes inflammation of the liver and, in the B form, can also cause liver cancer. This is easier to contract than HIV and unfortunately has no cure as of yet. You can catch hepatitis B and hepatitis C via any form of sex, by contact with an infected person’s blood or by sharing needles.

Hepatitis A can be found in faeces and is spread via rimming (using your mouth to stimulate your partner’s anus), sexual contact and eating or drinking anything contaminated. You should always wash your hands before eating and after going to the bathroom when there is a risk of hepatitis A. This is generally quite mild and you are infectious just before and during the time you have symptoms.

You can be vaccinated against hepatitis A and B which will make you immune for either a year (A) or up to 10 years (B). For hepatitis B you will get vaccination over up to a six month period. Ask your doctor or worker at a GUM clinic for more details, but this is advisable to have if you are either gay, an intravenous drug worker or a worker in the sex industry. Once you have had hepatitis A once you are immune to it.

All three types can be diagnosed via a blood test. In some cases you may be immune to contracting this STD as you have had it before and your body has naturally passed it out of your system. If you are diagnosed with hepatitis B or C then you are at risk or serious health implications and so your doctor will give you more information.

Up to 80% of people with Hepatitis C will not get rid of it and could potentially infect others so always use a condom when having sex.
 

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