Managing Hepatitis B
Steps for people who are chronically infected:
SOURCE: Asian Liver Center
- Measure ALT every 6 months to assess whether treatment is appropriate. Elevated ALT levels in the blood stream can indicate active liver damage.
- Have the AFP test done every 6 months to screen for liver cancer. AFP (Alpha-FetoProtein) is a test used to look for liver tumors in patients with chronic hepatitis B and those at high risk for liver cancer. High AFP levels can indicate the possibility of liver cancer.
- Receive an ultrasound every year to screen for liver cancer.
- Get the hepatitis A vaccine to avoid further damage to the liver.
- Avoid alcohol, drugs, herbal supplements and other substances that could potentially damage the liver.
- Have family members screened for HBsAg (Hepatitis B surface antigen) and HBsAb (Hepatitis B surface antibody), and get vaccinated if appropriate.
- Cancer patients who are infected with HBV should start prophylactic HBV oral antiviral treatment before chemotherapy to reduce the risk of acute or fulminant hepatitis induced by cancer chemotherapy.