11th March 13:57
Hepatitis E (miscarriage virus stomach pregnancy hepatitis)
Hepatitis E virus (HEV) causes acute hepatitis but does not lead to long term
It can however cause a serious infection in women who are in the last three
months of pregnancy, possibly being fatal in 1 in 5 cases. Hepatitis E may also
cause a miscarriage at any stage of pregnancy.
Hepatitis E is similar to Hepatitis A in that it occurs mainly by contamination
of food and water. It is common in India, Asia, Africa, Middle East and Central
The way in which Hepatitis E is spread is similar to Hepatitis A virus. The
virus is passed from person to person by eating food or drinking water
contaminated (infected) with the virus. The virus is passed out in the bowel
motions of an infected person. (This is why it is important to wash your hands
after going to the toilet).
It is not transmitted through blood, needles, or other body fluids or through
Epidemics happen when water supplies are contaminated with sewage after
monsoons and flooding.
The symptoms of Hepatitis E are tiredness, aches and pains, nausea (feeling
sick), sickness, stomach ache and/or diarrhoea. Jaundice (yellowing of the skin
and whites of the eyes) may develop, urine may become dark and bowel motions
may go pale.
Hepatitis E has an incubation period of between 2 and 12 weeks.
Infected persons may be infectious for up to 2 weeks after symptoms appear.
If Hepatitis E is suspected (i.e.travellers returning from areas where HEV is
common or a recent epidemic) it can be confirmed by a blood test.
At present there is no current vaccine for Hepatitis E
There is no specific treatment for Hepatitis E, many people feel tired and need
more rest than usual, they can eat and drink, as they are able. It is best to
avoid alcohol and a lot of exercise. Pregnant women are advised to see a
specialist as a matter of urgency.
Hepatitis E can be prevented by avoiding having ice cubes in drinks, drinking
tap water, eating ice cream or cleaning your teeth in tap water in countries
where it is common. Also by not eating poorly cooked shellfish, uncooked
vegetables, salads, unpeeled fruit or unpasteurised milk in high-risk countries.