The hepatitis D virus was discovered in Italy by Mario Rizzetto in 1977 during an investigation of the distribution of the Hepatitis B virus antigens in liver biopsy specimens of patients chronically infected with Hepatitis B virus. He described a new antigen in the nuclei of infected hepatocytes that was obligatorily associated with hepatitis B surface antigen. This new antigen was named delta.
Hepatitis C virus, identified in 1988, is an RNA virus that appears to be responsible for most instances of parenterally transmitted non-A, non-B hepatitis. The virus seems to mutate frequently and appear in many subtypes.
Hepatitis B is a leading cause of chronic hepatitis, cirrhosis, and hepatocellular carcinoma. Transmission of hepatitis B in the United States occurs predominantly through contact with infected blood products or body secretions (saliva, vaginal fluids, and semen) or…
Immune globulin (passive immunization): 0.02 mL/kg M (given 1-2weeks after exposure prevents illness in 80-90%). With prolonged exposure give q 5 months.
Viral hepatitis refers to the clinically important hepatotrophic viruses responsible for hepatitis A, hepatitis B, delta hepatitis, hepatitis C, and hepatitis E. Viral hepatitis has acute, fulminant, and chronic clinical forms defined by duration or severity of infection.
Hepatitis A infection is one of the most frequently reported vaccine-preventable diseases in the United States.