Hepatitis A


There is an outbreak of hepatitis A in our area. Hep A is a contagious liver disease. It is found in the feces (poop) of people with Hep A. You can get it by eating contaminated food or water, during sex, or by sharing personal items. It is serious and occasionally deadly. There is no cure, but it can be prevented with a vaccine. Most people get better after a few weeks although some are sick for several months. Hep A symptoms usually appear 2 to 6 weeks after exposure. People who believe they have been exposed to hepatitis A or who have symptoms should contact their health care provider immediately.  

Symptoms include:

  • stomach (belly) pain
  • nausea and vomiting
  • fatigue (feeling tired)
  • fever
  • loss of appetite
  • yellowing of skin and eyes
  • dark urine (pee)
  • pale-colored feces (poop)
  • joint pain

Risk

Anyone can get hepatitis A, but some people are at high risk in the current outbreak. Take our short quiz to find out if you are at high risk and eligible for a vaccine at no cost.

Prevention

Good hand washing before eating or preparing food is recommend for everyone and helps stop hepatitis A. You should also avoid sharing personal items to prevent Hep A. The Hep A vaccine is recommended for people at high risk, but others can get vaccinated too.

Vaccine

The hepatitis A vaccine is highly effective. Children are routinely vaccinated for hepatitis A, but many adults have not received the vaccine. People need two doses six months apart for long-lasting protection. Contact your doctor or call the health department at (517) 887-4316 for information or to get vaccinated. If you're high risk (take the quiz to find out if you are), you can get the vaccine at no cost from the health department. 

Want to know more? Visit the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services’ website for more information about hepatitis A and the Michigan outbreak.