Learning you are coinfected with hepatitis B and delta can be scary and overwhelming. Knowing the basics can help you know where to start in managing your health.
Understand Your Diagnosis
Hepatitis delta is a liver infection caused by the hepatitis delta virus (HDV). Only those already infected with hepatitis B can acquire hepatitis delta because it is dependent on the hepatitis B virus to reproduce. Coinfection (infection with hepatitis B and hepatitis delta at the same time) or superinfection (infection with hepatitis delta after a person already has chronic hepatitis B) can cause much more serious liver disease than a hepatitis B infection alone.
The hepatitis delta virus is transmitted through direct blood exposure to infected blood or sexual fluids, which can occur through unscreened blood transfusions, non-sterile medical procedures, intravenous drug use, and unprotected sex. It is very important to find a knowledgeable doctor who can provide the best management and treatment.
Prevent the Spread to Others
Hepatitis delta can be transmitted to others through infected blood and sexual fluids. Make sure that your loved ones receive the hepatitis B vaccine to protect them from being infected with both viruses. Also be aware of simple ways to protect your loved ones and sexual partners from hepatitis B and delta.
Find a Physician
If you have been diagnosed with hepatitis delta, it is important to find a doctor that has experience in hepatitis delta specifically. Visit our Physician Directory to find a liver specialist near you.
Please feel free to email the Hepatitis B Foundation at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. You are also welcome to join the new Hepatitis B Community, an online support group for those living with hepatitis B and delta.