Acute Viral Hepatitis

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Acute Viral Hepatitis

 

Acute viral hepatitis a disorder characterized by inflammation of the liver, due to infection with any one of the five hepatitis viruses. It is most commonly caused by Hepatitis A.

 

Causes

Some of the risk factors that have been identified for acute viral hepatitis are:

·         Working in a health care environment;

·         Having multiple sexual partners;

·         Intravenous drug use; and

·         Receiving medications to promote blood-clotting.

 

Symptoms and diagnosis

The extent of symptoms caused by acute viral hepatitis varies from being completely asymptomatic to life-threatening liver failure. The severity of symptoms is highly dependent on the particular virus involved, and the person’s response.

Generally, however, the symptoms of acute viral hepatitis appear suddenly, and include:

·         Abdominal pain;

·         Vomiting;

·         Red hives on the skin, often associated with hepatitis B;

·         Dark urine;

·         Yellowish discolouration of the skin (jaundice); and

·         Liver failure.

The diagnosis for acute viral hepatitis can be confirmed using blood tests. These can help to:

·         Assess liver function;

·         Indicate infection of the liver; and

·         Identify the specific hepatitis virus causing the infection.

 

Treatment

In most cases, special treatment for acute viral hepatitis is unnecessary, with patients usually recovering within four to eight weeks.

Patients are advised to abstain from alcohol for the duration of their convalescence, and doctors may suggest limiting, or stopping altogether, the dosage of a drug which the liver may struggle to metabolize.

 

Efficacy of Alternative and Other Treatments According to GRADE* Ranking:

Turmeric [1, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26]:

Please note, this management does NOT treat the condition itself. It is proposed only as a weak supportive symptomatic support, and even then, has insufficient evidence to back up this claim at present.

Recommendation: No recommendation (There is insufficient evidence to support claims that turmeric can help in the treatment of liver disease. More research is needed.)

Grade of Evidence: very low quality of evidence

Selenium Supplement [1,12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20]:

Please note, this management does NOT treat the condition itself. It may mildly help with some of the symptoms, and even then has insufficient evidence to back up this claim at present. IMPORTANT: Selenium is toxic in high doses. Massive overdoses can cause kidney failure, breathing difficulty and death. Selenium should only be taken at healthy levels which the body is able to tolerate.

Recommendation:  No recommendation (Available evidene does not support claims that selenium helps to prevent or treat hepatitis)

Grade of Evidence: very low of evidence

Licorice (Glcyrhiz Gaba) [1, 8, 9, 10, 11]:

Please note, this management does NOT treat the condition itself. It may mildly help with some of the symptoms, and even then has insufficient evidence to back up this claim at present. Licorice has been shown to have potentially harmful side effects in people with high blood pressure, liver or kidney diseases)

Recommendation: No recommendation (There is insufficient evidence to support claims that licorice helps treat hepatitis. More research is needed)

Grade of Evidence: very low quality of evidence

Germanium (Germanium Sesquioxide, Vitamin O) [1, 5, 6, 7]:

WARNING: Germanium may cause permanent Kidney failure. Even organic supplements, though less toxic than inorganic supplements, have caused kidney and liver damage. NOT TO BE USED.

Recommendation: strongly against (Evidence shows that Germanium is not effective in treating hepatitis in any way, and is also toxic, causing severe kidney and liver damage.)

Grade of Evidence: moderate quality of evidence

Chlorella (Green Algae, Chlorella Pyrenoidosa) [1, 2, 3, 4]:

Please note, this management does NOT treat the condition itself. It may mildly help with some of the symptoms, and even then has insufficient evidence to back up this claim at present.

Recommendation: no recommendation (There is insufficient evidence to support claims that Chlorella helps to treat hepatitis in any way)

Grade of Evidence: very low quality of evidence

* www.gradeworkinggroup.org

 


Summary References

Treatments:

1. Ades T, Alteri R, Gansler T, Yeargin P, "Complete Guide to Complimentary & Alternative Cancer Therapies", American Cancer Society, Atlanta USA, 2009

2. Nakano, S et al. “Maternal-fetal distribution and transfer of dioxins in pregnant women in Japan, and attempts to reduce maternal transfer with Chlorella (Chlorella pyrenoidosa) supplements...” Chemosphere 2005 Dec; 61(9): 1244–55.

3. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/entrez?cmd=retrieve&db=pubmed&list_uids=11347287&dopt=Abstract

4. http://www.cancer.org/Treatment/TreatmentsandSideEffects/ComplementaryandAlternativeMedicine/HerbsVitaminsandMinerals/chlorella

5. Baselt, R. (2008). Disposition of Toxic Drugs and Chemicals in Man (8 ed.). Foster City, CA: Biomedical Publications. pp. 693–694.

6. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9237323

7. http://www.cancer.org/Treatment/TreatmentsandSideEffects/ComplementaryandAlternativeMedicine/HerbsVitaminsandMinerals/germanium

8. Winston, David; Steven Maimes (2007). Adaptogens: Herbs for Strength, Stamina, and Stress Relief. Healing Arts Press.

9. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15190039

10. http://nccam.nih.gov/health/licoriceroot/

11. http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/druginfo/natural/patient-licorice.html

12. http://www.cancer.org/Treatment/TreatmentsandSideEffects/ComplementaryandAlternativeMedicine/HerbsVitaminsandMinerals/selenium?sitearea=ETO

13. http://www.cancer.gov/Templates/doc.aspx?viewid=ED8AD8E8-6AE5-458D-8091-393F4CB73F0D

14. http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/druginfo/natural/patient-selenium.html

15. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9290116

16. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9829869

17. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10335455

18. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2136228

19. http://www.springerlink.com/content/v0r644v4ju5153k2/

20. http://jnci.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/content/full/101/5/283

21. http://www.cancer.org/Treatment/TreatmentsandSideEffects/ComplementaryandAlternativeMedicine/HerbsVitaminsandMinerals/turmeric

22. http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/druginfo/natural/patient-turmeric.html

23 http://nccam.nih.gov/health/turmeric/index.htm

24. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/1668932.stm

25 http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/top-stories/2009/10/28/curry-kills-cancer-cells-and-other-health-benefits-of-the-nations-favourite-dish-115875-21779950/

26. http://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/results?term=turmeric





 

 


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