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Tracker Teaches: Hepatitis A 101

Attention, attention! Class is in session!

Thanks for stopping by Tracker gang! today I'm putting my professor cap on and going to teach you all about hepatitis A virus (HAV).

HAV is very contagious and can lead to liver disease. It can last anywhere from several weeks to several months! And it can be very serious, especially for those who have weakened immune systems, as it can lead to liver failure and death.

Let's talk about symptoms. Illness can occur 15 to 50 days after contamination and signs of infection include: fatigue, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, jaundice, dark urine, and pale stool" (U.S. Food and Drug Administration [USFDA], n.d.). But something to keep in mind, tracker gang, is that children under 6 can appear asymptomatic or without symptoms (USFDA, n.d.).

Anyone can get Hepatitis A, unless you were sick with it before or received the vaccine. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention recommends children get the vaccine at age one. If you are unvaccinated and traveling, it is strongly recommended to get vaccinated.

But how do you event get HAV??

Let's discuss!

One way is through foodborne illness. Although it is not common here in the United States, water, shellfish, raw vegetables and fruit, and salads are most common sources (USFDA, n.d.).

Did you know preventing the spread of HAV is super easy??

Washing your hands with warm water and soap for 20 minutes after touching raw foods or going to the restroom can prevent disease spreading. Don't forget to wash your kitchen tools like knifes and cutting boards, too!

But of course, as you know tracker gang, vaccines are the best prevention! You may have already gotten the vaccine when you were a baby but talk to your doctor about any questions or concerns you have.

Check this link for more information on HAV: hep-a.pdf (

Stay safe during your summer break, Tracker gang, and don't let Hep A ruin your vacation! Get your vaccinations!


Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). n.d. Hepatitis A - FAQs, Statistics, Data, and Guidelines. Retrieved from

United States Food and Drugs Administration (USFDA). n.d. Hepatitis A Virus (HAV). Retrieved from


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