When hepatitis isn’t being managed, it can lead to liver disease and cancer. Dr. Maher Almoudarres is an experienced gastroenterologist who is skilled at treating and managing hepatitis viruses. For 20 years, Dr. Almoudarres has cared for patients and their gastrointestinal disorders and diseases in the Brooklyn community of New York City. If you’re worried you have hepatitis, or need help managing your diagnosis, call Maher Almoudarres, MD, or schedule an appointment online today.
Hepatitis is an inflammatory condition that affects the liver. Your liver plays an important part in your overall health, filtering your blood, fighting infections, and processing nutrients.
Hepatitis is usually caused by a viral infection, but can also be caused by liver damage or a malfunction in your immune system. There are five types of hepatitis: A, B, C, D, and E, which is caused by a virus.
Types B and C are the most common forms of hepatitis. These chronic conditions are transmitted through bodily fluids such as blood and semen.
When left untreated, hepatitis B and C can lead to chronic liver disease, liver failure, and liver cancer.
In hepatitis B and C, symptoms usually don’t appear until liver damage occurs. When liver function is affected, you might experience:
Because chronic hepatitis develops slowly and without obvious symptoms, many people don’t realize they have the condition.
During your appointment, Dr. Almoudarres performs a full physical exam that includes your medical history. He checks to see if your liver is enlarged by pressing on your abdomen, and looks for yellow discoloration of your skin and eyes.
Based on your symptoms, blood tests might be done to evaluate your liver function. These can indicate a problem even if your body isn’t showing sign of liver disease. Your blood can also be checked for hepatitis viruses, and for antibodies in the types of hepatitis that aren’t caused by viruses.
An additional test that looks for signs of hepatitis is abdominal ultrasounds. These can reveal liver tumors, gallbladder abnormalities, liver enlargement or damage, and fluid in your abdomen. A liver biopsy might be necessary to determine the level of your liver’s inflammation.
Medications are available for effective treatment of hepatitis B and C. These include antiviral medications to control infection. Hepatitis B can become dormant, and there is also a vaccination available to prevent infection.
Treating hepatitis effectively depends on which type it is and the extent of your liver inflammation. Dr. Almoudarres conducts an extensive exam with each patient and recommends the best treatment plan for you based on your symptoms and test results.
Call Maher Almoudarres, MD, or schedule your appointment online to find help managing your hepatitis today.