If your kid seems to be showing symptoms that he has Hepatitis B infection, don’t hesitate to have him tested. Despite the fact that Hepatitis B is not like other chronic diseases that can cause disabilities and physical deformities, children with Hepatitis B can still suffer from their condition. For one, since this condition is communicable, some children might stereotype him for it and avoid him because to avoid being infected.
Hepatitis B and your kid’s growth
Your kid’s physical growth won’t be affected even if they test positive for Hepatitis B infection. Children treated with Hepatitis B won’t infect others anymore and they can continue to have a normal and healthy life as well.
What to remember if you are into adopting a child
If you are planning to adopt a child, it won’t hurt to ask your agency to have your kid get tested first. If the child you are planning to adopt is from a foreign land, it is best to have the child tested in your own country as a respect to the child’s original country and government. If the kid you are planning to adopt test result shows positive, this can be disappointing and saddening but it is not an issue that should lead to halting the adoption. Hepatitis B is curable and if taken care of, your adoptive child will now have his own immune system against Hepatitis B virus.
Treating kids with Hepatitis B
Hepatitis B is curable and you have two options if your kid tested positive. You can either use Epivir-HBV (lamivudine) or Intron A (interferon alpha). A recommendation from a specialist for the pediatric liver is important to determine if these treatments will work on your kid. There are children with chronic Hepatitis B that doesn’t need such treatment. If your kid has chronic Hepatitis B, you should see a liver specialist from time to time as well to make sure that your kid’s liver is not yet damaged by the virus.
Protecting your other kids
The most effective way of protecting the entire family from your other kid that has Hepatitis B infection is to get everyone vaccinated with Hepatitis B vaccine. Even adult members of the family must be vaccinated. Proper hygiene must be practiced as well such as washing hands all the time and not sharing towels and other personal things like toothbrush and nail cutters. For friends that might be coming over, tell them in advance about the situation that you have at home and make sure that they are vaccinated to or protected to prevent transmission of Hepatitis B virus.
The Hepatitis B Research Network
In the US, they have the Hepatitis B Research Network, an institute where children with Hepatitis B should be listed. The information that the network gathers will be used to further understand Hepatitis B in the country and how it affects children in general. This network is under the NIDDK of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and is funded by NIH.