Jul 30, 2005
what is the meaning of "inactive" in HEpa B status. Does it mean that symptoms are not yet shown? Is it curable? how many weeks? months?
| Response from Dr. McGovern
"Inactive hepatitis B" suggests that you have evidence of chronicity (Hepatitis B surface antigen positive) but have evidence of seroconversion (hepatitis E antigen negative and anti-HBe postiive) and no detectable virus or low virus (<10(5) copies/ml) with normal ALT levels (liver function tests) and minimal or no inflammation on liver biopsy.
With all that said, it is important to point out that hepatitis B infection can fluctuate so you cannot label someone as inactive until you have serial tests to demonstrate that the activity is truly quiescent. Also even after a period of time of inactivity, 20 percent of inactive carriers can "reactivate". Therefore it is important to have serial follow-up by your physician.
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