Hepatitis causes inflammation of the lever. Many conditions can cause inflammation of the liver like drugs, alcohol, chemicals and various autoimmune diseases. Differant viruses like mononucleosis and cytomegalovirus can cause inflammation of the liver. Viruses do not attack the liver and the liver is one of the organs that can be affected by viruses. There are several viruses which cause hepatitis and they are: A,B,C,D,E ,F and G. The most common hepatitis viruses are types A,B and C.
The liver is located in the upper right hand side of the abdominal region mostly behind the rib cage. The weight of liver is normally three pounds. When doctors inform about viral hepatitis then they are talking about attack caused due to viruses on the liver.
The functions of the liver are:
- The liver helps in purification of blood by changing harmful chemicals into harmless one. The source of these chemicals can be external such as medications or alcohol can be one of major reasons or internal caused by ammonia or bilirubin. These harmful chemicals are made into smaller chemicals and are finally removed from the body in the form of stool or urine.
- The liver stores many fats, vitamins and sugars until they are needed somewhere else in the body.
- Manufacture of cholesterol requires liver very much. The liver builds small chemicals into larger and more complicated ones required somewhere in the body. But when the liver is inflamed then it does not perform these functions well which brings about many symptoms and problems related with hepatitis.
Symptoms of Viral Hepatitis
Many patients having hepatitis A, B and C have less or no symptoms or signs of illness. The period between occurrence of hepatitis and the onset of illness is called incubation period. It varies depending on the particular hepatitis virus.
Various signs are:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Loss of appetite
- Weakness and tiredness
- Ache in abdomen region
- Light colored stools
- Dark urine
- Jaundice and fever