ITEMS IN AFP WITH MESH TERM:
Hepatitis B - Article
ABSTRACT: Hepatitis B causes significant morbidity and mortality worldwide. More than 400 million persons, including 1.25 million Americans, have chronic hepatitis B. In the United States, chronic hepatitis B virus infection is responsible for about 5,000 annual deaths from cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma. Hepatitis B virus is found in body fluids and secretions; in developed countries, the virus is most commonly transmitted sexually or via intravenous drug use. Occupational exposure and perinatal transmission do occur but are rare in the United States. Effective vaccines for hepatitis B virus have been available since 1982; infant and childhood vaccination programs introduced in the 1990s have resulted in a marked decrease in new infections. Risk factors for progression to chronic infection include age at the time of infection and impaired immunity. From 15 to 30 percent of patients with acute hepatitis B infection progress to chronic infection. Medical therapies for chronic hepatitis B include interferon alfa-2b, lamivudine, and the nucleotide analog adefovir dipivoxil.
Screening for Hepatitis B Virus Infection in Pregnancy: Reaffirmation Recommendation Statement - U.S. Preventive Services Task Force
ABSTRACT: Family physicians encounter diagnostic and treatment issues when caring for pregnant women with hepatitis B or C and their newborns. When hepatitis B virus is perinatally acquired, an infant has approximately a 90 percent chance of becoming a chronic carrier and, when chronically infected, has a 15 to 25 percent risk of dying in adulthood from cirrhosis or liver cancer. However, early identification and prophylaxis is 85 to 95 percent effective in reducing the acquisition of perinatal infection. Communication among members of the health care team is important to ensure proper preventive techniques are implemented, and standing hospital orders for hepatitis B testing and prophylaxis can reduce missed opportunities for prevention. All pregnant women should be screened for hepatitis B as part of their routine prenatal evaluation; those with ongoing risk factors should be evaluated again when in labor. Infants of mothers who are positive for hepatitis B surface antigen should receive hepatitis B immune globulin and hepatitis B vaccination within 12 hours of birth, and other infants should receive hepatitis B vaccination before hospital dis- charge. There are no effective measures for preventing perinatal hepatitis C transmission, but transmission rates are less than 10 percent. Perinatally acquired hepatitis C can be diagnosed by detecting hepatitis C virus RNA on two separate occasions between two and six months of age, or by detecting hepatitis C virus antibodies after 15 months of age.
Primary Care of International Adoptees - Article
ABSTRACT: International adoptees are presenting to family physicians with increasing frequency. U.S. citizens have adopted over 100,000 international children since 1979. Prospective parents may seek advice from their physician during the adoptive process. If available at all, medical information on the child is often scanty. History and physical examination alone are often insufficient for diagnosis of common problems in this population. Adoptive parents may have concerns about growth and development, and appropriate immunizations. In addition, bacterial, viral and parasitic infections endemic in countries of origin create unusual challenges for the U.S. primary care physician. A basic understanding of the process of international adoption, a skillful evaluation of the child and selected laboratory studies enable the family physician to support the prospective parents and assist in a smooth transition of the child into a new family.
Hepatitis B: Diagnosis and Treatment - Article
ABSTRACT: Although an estimated 1 million persons in the United States are chronically infected with hepatitis B virus, the prevalence of hepatitis B has declined since the implementation of a national vaccination program. Hepatitis B virus is transmitted in blood and secretions. Acute infection may cause nonspecific symptoms, such as fatigue, poor appetite, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, low-grade fever, jaundice, and dark urine; and clinical signs, such as hepatomegaly and splenomegaly. Fewer than 5 percent of adults acutely infected with hepatitis B virus progress to chronic infection. The diagnosis of hepatitis B virus infection requires the evaluation of the patient’s blood for hepatitis B surface antigen, hepatitis B surface antibody, and hepatitis B core antibody. The goals of treatment for chronic hepatitis B virus infection are to reduce inflammation of the liver and to prevent complications by suppressing viral replication. Treatment options include pegylated interferon alfa-2a administered subcutaneously or oral antiviral agents (nucleotide reverse transcriptase inhibitors). Persons with chronic hepatitis B virus infection should be monitored for disease activity with liver enzyme tests and hepatitis B virus DNA levels; considered for liver biopsy; and entered into a surveillance program for hepatocellular carcinoma.