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Hepatitis B Clinical Research

Hepatitis B is a serious infection affecting many people throughout the United States, some may not even know they have it. There are currently numerous clinical studies on hepatitis B being conducted in the U.S. and around the world. Hepatitis B clinical research is us learn more and more about this disease every year.

hepatitis b clinical research being conducted in port orange, florida

Why is hepatitis B clinical research so important? Currently, there is no known cure for the condition and the spread of this infection still continues. Fortunately, research on hepatitis B has helped improve our knowledge on how to prevent the spread of the disease and led to the development of effective treatments. Through continued clinical research we may be able to find even better treatments for hepatitis B and hopefully a cure.

If you have been living with hepatitis B and traditional treatment methods have proved ineffective, then it may be time to try something new. Often, patients who could potentially benefit from investigational treatment miss out on these Florida hepatitis B clinical trials because their doctor isn’t even aware of a study in the area.

Are you interested in learning more about hepatitis B clinical research? You will find a form in the right hand corner of this page. Fill out the form and a member of our staff will contact you to discuss upcoming research studies and your eligibility for enrollment or call us at (386) 760-7353 to speak with one of our experts about the hepatitis B clinical studies in Port Orange.

What is Hepatitis B?

Hepatitis B is an infection of the liver that is spread through contact with the blood, body fluids, or open sores of an individual having the hepatitis B virus.

Most cases do not last long: the body is able to fight the infection in a relatively short amount of time, and once it does so an infected individual is immune for life. The virus may cause scarring or failure of the liver, and potentially cancer. If left untreated, hepatitis B can be fatal.

hepatitis b virus

The hepatitis B virus is considered a blood-borne virus since it is passed via contaminated blood or fluid coming into contact with blood. This may occur through the use of dirty needles, either for illicit drug use or inadvertently in the healthcare environment.

Semen and saliva contaminated with blood can also carry the virus. The virus must come into contact with a mucous membrane in the body or an open wound for infection to occur.

The following may put you at higher risk of hepatitis B infection:

  • Having multiple sex partners, especially without proper condom usage
  • Men having sex with other men, especially without proper condom usage
  • Sex with a person infected with the hepatitis B virus
  • Injecting drugs or sharing needles
  • Organ transplants or blood transfusions
  • Dialysis for kidney disease
  • Infants born to infected mothers
  • Traveling to areas outside the United States where hepatitis B is common

Hepatitis B cannot be transferred through non-fluid related contact such as hugging, grabbing a door handle after someone, breastfeeding, or sharing food or water.

How Do I Know if I Have Hepatitis B?

According to the CDC, incidents of hepatitis B infection have decreased since the 1980s. Due to a variety of factors, people between the ages of 20-49 are most susceptible to infection. An estimated 1.4 million people in the United States carry the virus.

Symptoms of hepatitis B include the following:

  • Appetite loss
  • Fatigue
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Dark urine
  • Jaundice
  • Bodily itching
  • Pain in the area of the liver
  • Grayish stool

As much as half of all infected persons may not feel any symptoms of the hepatitis B virus. Symptoms are more commonly developed in adults than children. Initial symptoms can often appear like the flu, and usually show up 1-4 months after infection. Viral hepatitis A and C have symptoms that are identical to hepatitis B.

Fulminate hepatitis is an acute form of hepatitis that is very rare but can be fatal if not treated immediately. Symptoms tend to be sudden and include sudden collapse with fatigue, jaundice, swelling of the abdomen, and mental disturbances such as confusion, lethargy, extreme sleepiness, or hallucinations.

If your doctor thinks you may have contracted the hepatitis B virus, they will give you a full physical examination as well as blood tests that check for the virus or antibodies that fight hepatitis B. They may also take a biopsy of your liver if there is potential for a chronic infection, which can result in long-term health problems, including liver damage, liver failure, liver cancer, and even death.

If you fear that you’ve been exposed to the virus, go to a doctor as quickly as possible. They will give you a shot of hepatitis B immune globulin as well as a vaccine. If you do get sick, bed rest may be ordered to aid your recovery. During this time, be sure to eat a healthy diet, give up harmful agents to your liver like alcohol and acetaminophen, and check with your doctor before taking any drugs or medication.

If the infection goes away, you will be considered an “inactive carrier”. If the infection lasts longer than 6 months, you will be informed that you have chronic hepatitis B, and you may be given a variety of medications to treat it.

If you have passed the virus onto your baby during pregnancy and it does not receive proper treatment, long-term liver problems could develop. All newborns from infected mothers should get the vaccine as well as the hepatitis B immunoglobulin during their first year.

How Can I Avoid Contracting Hepatitis B?

The best way to prevent infection is to get the hepatitis B vaccine, which is safe and effective and usually administered in 3-4 shots over a 6 month period. Children should get their first dose of the vaccine and complete the series by 18 months of age.

If all doses are completed in the time recommended by doctors (6 months), the hepatitis B vaccine is extremely effective at preventing infection. A combination vaccine is available to protect from both hepatitis A and B.

Hepatitis B Clinical Trials in Port Orange, Florida

Would you be willing to participate in a hepatitis B clinical trial? We are looking for real life superheroes like you!

We would be happy to answer any of your questions and help you enroll in one of our studies. If you are not sure how the clinical research process works you should take a look at our participant resource section.

Woman inquires about hepatitis B clinical research in Port Orange

Qualified participants may receive compensation for their time and necessary travel. They’ll also receive the following free of charge:

  • Physical examinations
  • Laboratory services
  • Study related medication

Our team is conducting clinical trials for a wide range of medical conditions here in Port Orange. This means that we likely have an enrolling study that you can qualify for, even if you do not have hepatitis B. If you are interested in helping us advance modern medicine and save more lives, please give us a call today at (386) 760-7353.