Does hepatitis A test use blood or urine?
Our hepatitis A test is a blood test. When you visit one of our testing centers, a lab technician will draw a small sample of blood.
What do I need to do to prepare for the test?
No fasting or any other preparation is necessary before visiting the testing center.
When is the right time to test for hepatitis A?
Our doctors recommend waiting at least 2-7 weeks to get tested because the hepatitis A virus (HAV) has an average incubation period of about 28 days. While HAV infection usually does not result in chronic liver disease or infection, it can prove fatal in rare cases (0.5%). In addition, 10%-15% of HAV patients may have a relapse of symptoms during the 6 months after treatment.
How did I contract hepatitis A?
HAV is commonly acquired via fecal to mouth contact (i.e., eating food or drinking water contaminated with feces). The virus can also be contracted through anal-oral contact during sex.
What will the test results say?
Your hepatitis A test result will say positive or negative. If your result is negative, there is no sign of hepatitis A. If positive, hepatitis A antibodies were found.
Can hepatitis A be cured or treated?
There is no cure for the hepatitis A virus. If you have contracted the virus, doctors will monitor your liver functions to ensure you are healing properly. To protect yourself against HAV, be sure to practice good personal hygiene and get a vaccination if you are at risk for infection. Hepatitis A vaccinations are recommended for all children one year and older, for persons who are at risk for hepatitis A-related complications, and for people who wish to obtain immunity from the virus.
Who needs hepatitis A testing?
Anyone can get hepatitis A in the United States, as there are no specific risk factors associated with the virus. However, among the groups who are most susceptible to contracting hepatitis A are men who have had sexual contact with other men, people who engage in oral to anal sex, illegal drug users, and international travelers who acquire the virus in countries where HAV is prevalent.