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Hepatitis and HIV CoinfectionHepatitis and HIV Coinfection
          
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An avid reader's question
Oct 20, 2006

Gud day to you all! Dr. I often read the forum here in your website about hepatitis B and I found it very informative. However, i have this question in my mind that I need to ask you about. You often use the phrase "the virus is cleared" or "you have cleared the virus on your own" what does it really mean? Does it mean that your not contagious to other people anymore? If your a woman and had cleared the HBV when you had it in the past, does it mean that there is no chance that you can transmit it to your baby when you get pregnant? And lastly, if you have cleared the virus, does it mean that you can work in other countries like USA or Japan? Would it mean that the HBV in your blood will not be seen? I belong to the third world country I plan to work abroad, the truth is I dont know if I have HBV. You said that its assymtomatic so maybe I have it I dont know really. I hope that you will find time answering my question It would really mean a lot to me. Thank you

Response from Dr. McGovern

When I say "cleared" yes I mean that no virus is found in the blood. This happens with most people who get hepatitis B in adulthood. Most people recover from their infection and do not transmit the virus to others.

However, those who get hepatitis B at birth often have ongoing virus in their blood.

Whether virus causes disease or not is related to the immune response to the virus. The immune response causes the irritation we see in the liver.



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