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A 36-year-old member asked:

What's the difference between acute viral hepatitis and chronic viral hepatitis?

2 doctor answers3 doctors weighed in
Dr. Sidney Vinson
Gastroenterology 27 years experience
See below: Patients with acute viral hepatitis generally present with nausea, malaise, weakness, fevers, and jaundice which occur within days to weeks of infection. Depending on the cause, this usually will resolve sponteneously. Chronic hepatitis occurs when an infection does not resolve. Those with chronic hepatitis generally do not have symptosm but can develop complications over time.
Dr. John Fung
General Surgery 39 years experience
Depends on virus: Acute viral hepatitis is a self limiting infection. Hepatitis a is only an acute infection and does not progress to chronicity. For hepatitis b, about 10-15% of patients with acute hepatitis will develop chronic hbv. In contrast, for hepatitis c, 75-80% of patients with acute hepatitis will develop chronic hcv. Chronicity develops when the immune system is unable to clear the virus.

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A 33-year-old member asked:

What's the difference between acute and chronic viral hepatitis?

1 doctor answer1 doctor weighed in
Dr. Dan Fisher
Internal Medicine 27 years experience
Short and long: Acute hepatitis is the period of initial infection in which your naive immune system develops antibodies to the invading hep a, b or c. If everything works well your body defeats the infection and the invaders are cleared from your system. In chronic hepatitis the invading hep b or c particles evade the immune system and persist in the cells of your liver causing longstanding damage.

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Last updated Mar 1, 2013
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