Ohio: Hepatitis A Outbreak - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Ohio: Hepatitis A Outbreak

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According to the Ohio Department of Health, they, along with local health departments are looking into an increased number of Hepatitis A cases in Ohio.

The odh.ohio.gov site said that they have declared a "statewide community outbreak of Hepatitis A after observing an increase in cases linked to certain risk factors since the beginning of 2018. 

Reports stated that outbreaks have been taking place in many states across the United States.

The Ohio Department of Health wrote, "Hepatitis A is a vaccine-preventable liver disease that usually spreads when a person ingests fecal matter - even in microscopic amounts - from contact with objects, food or drinks contaminated by the stool of an infected person.  Hepatitis A can also be spread from close personal contact with an infected person, such as through sex."


ODH reported people at increased risk for hepatitis A in this outbreak include:

People with direct contact with individuals infected with the virus
Men who have sex with men
People who use street drugs whether they are injected or not
People who are incarcerated
People experiencing homelessnessPeople who have traveled to other areas of the U.S. currently experiencing outbreaks

Symptoms of hepatitis A include:

Fatigue, low appetite, stomach pain, nausea, clay-colored stools, and jaundice.  People with hepatitis A can experience mild illness lasting a few weeks to a severe illness lasting several months.

According to professionals, if a person thinks they are at risk for Hepatitis A, they should contact their doctor to see about the vaccine.

Also, if a person believed they have been exposed to Hepatitis A, they should call their doctor to see about "post-exposure vaccination options."

If a person is experiencing Hepatitis A symptoms, they should call their doctor as soon as possible, according to the ODH.

For more information, please call the Ohio Department of Health Bureau of Infectious Diseases at (614) 995-5599.

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