Learning you are co-infected with hepatitis D can be scary and overwhelming. Knowing the basics can help you know where to start in managing your disease.
Understand Your Diagnosis
Hepatitis D is a liver infection caused by the hepatitis delta virus (HDV). Only those already infected with hepatitis B can acquire hepatitis D because it is dependent on the hepatitis B virus to reproduce. Co-infection (infection with hepatitis B and hepatitis D at the same time) or super-infection (infection with hepatitis D after a person has already acquired hepatitis B) causes a much more serious liver disease than a hepatitis B infection alone.
The hepatitis D virus is transmitted by infected blood and body fluids through direct exposure to blood, intravenous drug use, and unprotected sex. It is very important to find a knowledgeable doctor who can provide the best medical care and treatment to ensure that you live a long, healthy life.
Prevent the Spread to Others
Hepatitis D can be transmitted to others through infected blood and bodily fluids. Make sure that your loved ones receive the hepatitis B vaccine to protect them from being infected with hepatitis D. Also be aware of simple ways to protect your loved ones and sexual partners from hepatitis D.
Find a Physician
If you have been diagnosed with hepatitis D, it is important to find a doctor that has experience in treating liver disease. Most doctors who treat hepatitis B patients also know how to care for those infected with hepatitis D. 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. Contact the Hepatitis B Information and Support List, an online patient support group for those living with hepatitis B and D.