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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    How long is hepatitis A contagious?

    I have been sick for 3 weeks with abdominal pain and have just been sent for blood tests to rule out hepatitis A. I don't have jaundice or any other symptoms and I am wondering, do you need to be excluded from work whilst you are being tested for it?
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  • Dr Stuart Aitken

    Sexual Health Specialist

    Dr Aitken's areas of interest include HIV medicine, sexually transmissible infections, skin conditions affecting the genitals, and gender medicine. He offers discrete, specialist consultations in … View Profile

    Hepatitis A is caused by the Hepatitis A Virus. 

    Hepatitis A is very infectious, and is spread through food and water that is contaminated with faecal material from someone who has hep A. 

    If your abdominal pain is due to hepatitis A, you will be infectious until one week after the jaundice (yellowing of the whites of the eyes and skin) develops. Jaundice is often preceded by abdominal discomfort, fever and nausea. 

    In general people with Hepatitis A should not work until the yellowing of the eyes and skin has disappeared. The decision whether to work or not depends on your circumstances. For those with a high chance of having Hepatitis A, and those who work in food preparation, do not work until Hepatitis A has been excluded. 

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