Hepatitis B is diagnosed with a simple blood test that can be done at your doctor’s office or local health clinic. There are 3 parts to the hepatitis B panel of blood tests, so understanding your test results can be confusing. Are you infected with hepatitis B? Are you protected from hepatitis B because you were vaccinated or have recovered from a past infection? Are you at risk of being infected with hepatitis B? It is very important to understand your hepatitis B blood test results so that you receive the right kind of care and follow-up.
The hepatitis B blood test requires only one sample of blood and your health care provider should order the “Hepatitis B Panel,” which includes three parts. You and your health care provider will need to know all three test results in order to fully understand whether you are infected, protected or still at risk for a hepatitis B infection. Your health care provider may ask to check your blood again in six months after your first visit to confirm your hepatitis B status. Remember to ask for a copy of your hepatitis B blood test results so that you fully understand which tests are positive or negative.
Hepatitis B testing is available from many sources throughout the United States. Our Hep B United partners provide testing in cities throughout the U.S. Visit http://hepbunited.org/local-campaigns to learn more about local coalitions near you and upcoming screenings.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also maintain a database of testing centers, searchable by zip code, at https://gettested.cdc.gov/.