Well Zeon - you asked a sensible question and received some quite banal replies..never mind! - Click the link to find out more but the gist of it is.Originally Posted by zeon9881
Hepatitis B is highly contagious - which means it can be passed from person to person very easily. It's 50 to 100 times more contagious than HIV. The virus is present in body fluids such as blood, saliva, semen and vaginal fluid.
There are a number of ways you can get hepatitis B.
From mother to baby
This is the most common way for hepatitis B to be spread worldwide. If the virus spreads from mother to baby it usually happens during childbirth. It is not common for hepatitis to be spread in this way in the UK.
If blood from an infected person gets into your bloodstream you can get hepatitis B. There are a number of ways this could happen including:
* through an open wound
* from a contaminated needle
* from contaminated medical or dental equipment which is not sterilised
* from contaminated tattooing equipment which is not sterilised properly
* from blood donations in countries where blood is not tested (in the UK all
blood donations are tested for hepatitis B)
If you have unprotected sex with an infected person you can get hepatitis B.
Where in the world is hepatitis B common?
High-risk areas for getting the disease include South-East Asia, Africa, the Middle East, the Far East and southern and eastern Europe.
Common symptoms can be jaundice (yellowing) of the eyes and skin, lack of energy - lethargy, feeling sick or pain in the liver area, lack of appetite.
If you are living in close proximity with either an acute or chronic HepB carrier then you can have a vaccination in a 3-4 dose treatment from your doctor which will immunise you against a possible infection.
Be sensible not scared - he will know the precautions to take, as he's been diagnosed then they do give you lots of information regarding the do's and don't. You can't / shouldn't drink, giving up smoking is a good idea and generally look after yourself.Originally Posted by zeon9881
Other precautions can be, for example, separate towels and wash bed sheets on a regular basis. Common sense when dealing with hygiene. As for shaking hands and that stuff, unless he is bleeding like a fountain then it should be safe to say that you won't catch it easily. A very close relative of mine has acute HepB, hence the reason I can answer this post, and there is not shame in contracting HepB as long as you look after yourself and realise that it is a life changing infection - not only for you but the people who live and work with you.
Hope this helps...