May is Hepatitis awareness month. Millions of Americans are living with chronic viral hepatitis and many do not know that they are infected. Every year, approximately 15,000 Americans die from liver cancer or chronic liver disease associated with viral hepatitis. Despite this, viral hepatitis is not well known. In fact, as many as 75 percent of the millions of Americans with chronic viral hepatitis don’t know they’re infected.
The word “hepatitis” means inflammation of the liver. Hepatitis is most often caused by one of several viruses, which is why it is often called viral hepatitis.
The Centers for Disease Control offers a free Hepatitis Risk Assessment to find out if you should be tested for viral hepatitis. This risk assessment tool allows individuals to answer questions privately, either in their home or in a health care setting, and print their recommendations to discuss with their doctor. May 19 is National Hepatitis Testing Day.
You can take the free test by clicking on the link above.