Vaccination against hepatitis B

Hepatitis B is an life-threatening infectious liver disease, caused by a virus of the same name. Unfortunately, a viral liver disease is one of the most frequent and widespread: the number of people infected with hepatitis B virus is more than 2.1 billion and more than 350 million have chronic (long-term) liver infections. (World Health Organisation)

At the same time every year from acute and chronic hepatitis B die about 1 million people. However, the disease is dangerous not only because of its prevalence and the high number of fatalities, but because of a significant number of disabled persons among the convalescents. Up to 10% of adults and up to 50-90% of children with acute hepatitis B are carriers of the virus, the infection they have become chronic with a high risk of developing cancer and cirrhosis. In this case, the hepatitis B virus, according to World Health Organization (WHO), is a major causative agent of primary liver cancer – up to 80% of all cases. (World Health Organization)

In the fight against viral hepatitis B, the primary role is given to active specific immunization – Vaccination against hepatitis B. To prevent infection with hepatitis B virus are used vaccines against hepatic: such as Endzheriks B Kombioteh, Euvaks, etc. The vaccine is a solution containing the major immunogenic protein of hepatitis B virus, HVs Ag. Antibodies to this protein (to hepatitis B) start to develop two weeks after vaccination, and after three provisions of the vaccine the immunity is produced in 99% of cases. Scheme of the vaccine is as follows: 1 ml of vaccine injected intramuscularly in the deltoid muscle of the shoulder. After the first vaccination in a 1 month is made the second infection, and 5 months after the third one. (Hepatitis B Foundation 2009)

Current vaccines do not cause serious adverse reactions, the possible reactions include slight fever, and very rare allergic reactions. The overall incidence of any adverse events is 2-5%. In general, the medical community evaluates the registered hepatitis B vaccine as safe and effective in children and adults. Vaccination protects against infection with hepatitis B: triple injection of the vaccine leads to the formation of specific antibodies that prevent development of hepatitis B in 98% of cases. Immunity lasts for at least 8-10 years, but it often remains for life. WHO recommends that hepatitis B vaccine be included in routine immunization schedules for all children in all countries. (World Health Organization)

In conclusion it is possible to say that according to official information of the WHO and other medical organizations, Hepatitis b vaccination is an important step to prevent this serious and dangerous disease. Nowadays there is an effective vaccine against hepatitis B virus, which is considered safe. That is, vaccination against hepatitis B can be considered as an effective and practically safe method to save the health of people around the world from Hepatitis B disease.

Works cited
“Hepatitis B factsheet”. World Health Organization, 2008. Web. 9 Apr 2011
“Hepatitis B Vaccine”. Hepatitis B Foundation. Doylestown, Pennsylvania, 2009. Web. 9 Apr 2011
World Health Organization. “Hepatitis B”. Immunization, Vaccines and Biologicals. Web. 9 Apr 2011

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