Hepatitis B is a prominent global health challenge because it is a viral infection that has an adverse effect on the liver and can result in acute or chronic liver diseases. This virus ranges from a mild illness not exceeding a few weeks, to a lifelong illness.
A lot of people with Hepatitis B virus do not know they have the virus, it is only in the rare circumstance that symptoms manifest physically at the early stage that carriers get aware. This does not mean that persons without visible symptoms cannot spread the disease.
Hepatitis B booster (revaccination) is an additional dose of Hepatitis B (HBV), a shot of live but safe virus given post-primary vaccination to boost immune memory and improve protection against Hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection.
At this juncture, it is important to note that Hepatitis B can be spread when blood, semen, or other body fluids infected with the Hepatitis virus enters the body of a person who is not infected. In the United States, it has been recorded that there are so many cases of Hepatitis infection, most of which are occasioned by having unprotected sex with a partner who is infected with same
The Need for Hepatitis B Booster Vaccine
Over time, as a result of the catastrophic nature of Hepatitis B infection, so many people infected with same were enjoined to get vaccinated. Along the line, it was discovered that due to various degrees of Hepatitis B infection, vaccination was never enough because whenever they get treated for Hepatitis B infection, after some time it re-surfaces again, hence the need for Hepatitis B booster. For the most part, HBV booster dose is not recommended for persons with normal immune status who have previously been vaccinated.
Although there are effective Hepatitis B vaccines in various combinations, the benefit of a full primary vaccination course is a clear protection against life-threatening diseases. It is important to also add that the requirement for a booster (vaccination administered after a full course) varies from one country to another.
For instance, in the United States, Hepatitis B booster is not recommended for adults and children with normal immune statuses, whereas in the United Kingdom, administration of a single booster dose five years after completion of primary vaccination is necessary. In Germany, a booster is recommended after ten years when the risk potentials continue.
In the United States, the recommended schedule consists of 2 doses with the second dose to be administered within 6-I8 months after the initial vaccination.
The Necessity of Booster Doses to attack Hepatitis B
A booster dose of Hepatitis B vaccine is a dose that increases the effectiveness of the vaccine. Therefore booster doses are not recommended for healthy people, they are recommended only in certain circumstances and the need for booster doses is determined by a certain blood test that looks for Hepatitis B surface antibodies.
The Danger of not being vaccinated
Although anyone can get infected with the Hepatitis B virus if not vaccinated, some persons are at higher risk than others which makes it necessary to get tested and vaccinated as soon as possible.
In cases where one is accidentally exposed to Hepatitis B virus, it is expedient to see a physician in order to be vaccinated or given a shot of the HBIG (Hepatitis B Immune Globulin) within 24 hours, so that the infection can be prevented.
Who should get vaccinated with the Hepatitis B Vaccine?
The Hepatitis B vaccine is recommended for:
- All Infants
- All children and adolescents younger than the age of I8 years who have not been vaccinated
- People at risk for infection via sexual exposure
- People in constant contact with blood like health workers
- People who have shared syringes, needles, and other drug equipment
- Hospital workers who are at risk of exposure
- People infected with HIV virus
- People with the chronic liver diseases
Over the years, it has been recorded in the United State that the rate at which people get vaccinated for Hepatitis virus is becoming something of great concern because a lot of people are victims of this virus. Even after taking the vaccination shots, many find out they are not enough because it may still re-surface again.
The advent of re-vaccination (booster) is now beginning to pave way for people not to totally rely on one-time vaccination alone. Simply put, re-vaccination is the utmost guarantee for totally eradicating Hepatitis B virus as it has a long lasting potential measure as compared to one-time vaccination only.
It is suggested that anyone infected with this virus should consult his or her doctor for proper Hepatitis B booster vaccines so that the right medical steps can be followed because as amazing as it may sound, many people still live with the habit of engaging in self-medication.