If you have hepatitis A, avoid alcohol until you are well. Alcohol is a toxic substance, and it has detrimental effects on an already inflamed liver. Alcohol itself can cause a unique form of hepatitis. In order to prevent transmission to others, exercise greater awareness of sanitation and food preparation, both at home and especially if traveling to foreign countries.
In addition to the physical symptoms, hepatitis A often causes emotional stress. It can be helpful to talk to friends and loved ones about the difficulties the illness is causing you. Consider using other stress reduction techniques, such as meditation and relaxation exercises. Once the jaundice is gone and you return to work and daily activities, you may still experience serious fatigue. To prevent fatigue from becoming overwhelming, do only essential daily activities and spread out optional ones throughout the week. If possible, consider taking short naps during the day. While recovering, some people may need to try to arrange more flexible work schedules.
Tell your doctor about new, worsening, or prolonged symptoms. They may indicate complications or changes in the way your liver is functioning. It's also important to discuss with your doctor any vitamins, nutritional supplements, or over-the-counter medications before you take them. Any of these, particularly large doses of acetaminophen and vitamin A, can have a detrimental impact on your inflamed liver.
Last reviewed on 7/28/09
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