Hepatitis B is a serious disease that is caused by the hepatitis B virus (HBV), which usually exists in the blood and bodily fluids of the infected (or HBV+) person. The virus infects people of all ages and every year, about 200,000 people are newly infected in the United States. Of this 200,000, 90% eventually recover and clear the virus, but over 11,000 will have to be hospitalized and over 20,000 (10%) will become chronically (permanently) infected with the virus. About 1.25 million people in the United States have chronic HBV infection, and more than 4,000 people die each year from hepatitis B related liver disease.
This section provides information and links to resources on hepatitis B. Look here for new studies on hepatitis B and on HBV, as well as for links to new information. The AMA hopes that these pages will help the practising physician maintain a current understanding of the science and management of this bloodborne pathogen.
Immunizing high-risk populations
Highlights collaboration between the CDC and the AMA to improve immunization against vaccine-preventable hepatitis in high-risk populations.
The Hepatitis B Vaccine
Questions and answers about the hepatitis B vaccine, what it is, who should be vaccinated, safety, side effects, and links to more information.