The Alabama Department of Public Health has investigated three cases of hepatitis A in Clarke County residents. Two of the cases involve people who have a history of international travel.
Signs and symptoms of hepatitis A virus infection appear 15 to 50 days after exposure and commonly include mild fever, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and tiredness. Other symptoms are pain in the upper right side of the abdomen, dark urine, light stools, and jaundice (yellowness of eyes or skin). The disease varies in severity, from mild cases lasting 2 weeks or less to more severe cases lasting 4 to 6 weeks or longer. If you become ill with these
symptoms, please contact your health care provider immediately. If you do not have a health care provider, you may contact the Clarke County Health Department at (251) 275-3772.
Casual contact, such as in the office or school setting does not transmit the virus. Hepatitis A virus spreads when a person ingests contaminated food or water, or is exposed to contaminated objects. Persons are at increased risk of acquiring hepatitis A virus if they are household or sexual contacts with infected individuals. Frequent thorough hand washing with warm water and soap for 20 seconds is essential to stopping the spread of hepatitis A virus.