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Is ARS possible with Hepatitis B?
Sep 2, 1997

Hi Rick! For a person recently infected with Hepatitis B, is there anything like ARS for HIV to occur? If yes, what are its symptoms? Are they like HIV ARS's? You mentioned that for HIV ARS, swollen lymph nodes could show. Can one have swollen lymphs on the one side on the neck, and not on the other? (that's because I consulted 3 doctors with this. Two said I have nothing swollen, and one said only left sde of the neck shows something?) Thanks for your very helpful work!

Response from Mr. Sowadsky

Hi. Thank you for your question. I am not aware of Hepatitis B causing an Acute Viral Syndrome similar to that of HIV. When a person is concerned about the symptoms of Hepatitis B, my advice is exactly the same as that of HIV.

Carefully read all the information found on our web page about the Hepatitis B and HIV viruses. It should answer the vast majority of questions regarding symptoms of both Hepatitis B and HIV.

If you are having any types of symptoms, I cannot tell you whether these may be due to Hepatitis B or HIV. Only laboratory testing for these viruses can determine whether a person is infected or not.

If you are having any symptoms that are not going away after 1 to 2 weeks, or if your symptoms are very severe, see your physician, regardless of what you think the cause of your symptoms may be.

If you have been exposed to Hepatitis B or HIV, consider getting tested. This is true whether you are having symptoms or not. This is the only way to know whether you have been infected with either of these viruses.

Remember that I cannot tell you whether any of your symptoms may be due to these viruses or not. Because EVERY symptom associated with these viruses looks like the symptoms of other illnesses, I cannot tell you if your personal symptoms may be related to Hepatitis B or HIV. Again, only testing can determine that.

You will also note that nobody, not yourselves, myself, nor anybody on the Internet, nor any Hotline, can tell you if your symptoms may be Hepatitis B or HIV related, without having laboratory tests done.

Whenever you get any symptoms after an exposure is unimportant and irrelevant. What is important is that if you've been exposed to these viruses, that you get tested, regardless of whether you have symptoms or not. And if your symptoms are persistent or very severe, it's important that you see a physician, regardless of what you think the cause may be.

For more information on the symptoms of Hepatitis B, see the posting, "What is viral Hepatitis, and how is it transmitted?" in the Frequently Asked Questions section of this website.

If you have any further questions, please feel free to call the Centers for Disease Control at 1.800.232.4636 (Nationwide).



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