commonly it can be transmitted through unclean medical and
dental procedures as well as living closely with a person
who has been infected.
playing together with cuts and scrapes may also transmit this.
have been known to transmit Hepatitis B by cuts and exchange
of body fluids.
B virus is more common and easier to transmit than AIDS.
also kills more people yearly.
there is a vaccine available for people who are at potential
is recommended that travelers have the Hepatitis B vaccine
if they are travelling to a country where it is common or
if a traveller is planning to send three months or more in
a certain area.
involved with medical centres, sanitation and sewage projects,
or day care positions should consider being immunized.
travelers often deny planning risky sexual behavior on vacation
it is well known that many do so and therefore they should
The Hepatitis B vaccine is currently available to grade four
students in Manitoba as part of their vaccination schedule.
and teens that have not yet been vaccinated should consider
children that may be travelling abroad for extended periods
should also consider being vaccinated.
B Immunization and Safety
Hepatitis B vaccine is considered safe and there is no evidence
to link it with multiple sclerosis, diabetes, or autism as
been suggested by anti-vaccination groups.
groups have issued many misleading statements about vaccinations.
Canada and the World Health Organization advocate the use
of vaccinations to prevent further spread of Hepatitis B.
Hepatitis B is available in several brands and is given on
visit one, then again in one month and the final booster is
given in five to six months. (0,1 and 6 months)
Two doses are necessary to initiate enough antibodies to provide
adequate protection while travelling. After having the third
dose the vaccine is effective for at least ten years.
are no guidelines for boosting people past ten years, as it
is believed they still have long-term immunity.
Hepatitis A and B are combined together (Twinrix) to give
both vaccines at once in the same needle.
variation of the vaccination schedule can be given during
the initial visit, seven days later and the in twenty-one
A final booster should be given in twelve months to
provide coverage for the following ten years.
(0 day, 7days, 21 days and 12 months)
A sore arm and
low-grade fever are the most common side effects of the vaccine
and may last anywhere from 1 - 3 days.
Not required after completion of three shot series (or 4 if
recieving the accelerated dosing schedule)
Health care professionals are required to have their immunity
checked with a blood test since some people do not mount a
complete response from the vaccine (poor responders) or no
response (non responders)
B infections may be almost asymptomatic or actively involving
may die from liver failure or they may be more prone to liver
cancer in the future.
with diagnosed Hepatitis B should be under the care of a specialist
and should do everything possible to avoid further liver damage.
may include avoiding alcohol and Tylenol (as well as other
drugs that either effect the liver or are metabolised).
with Hepatitis B may also consider immunization with Hepatitis
A since any further liver damage from a potential 2nd liver
infection could be very serious.
all individuals with any liver disease should consider vaccination
for both Hepatitis A and B
Hepatitis B should be considered for travelers when:
1) To cover accidents requiring medical intervention
2) Exposed to non-sterile medical equipment and unscreened
blood or blood products
3) Cosmetic practices (body piercing) and tattoos
4) Casual sexual liaisons
Estimated rate of infection of Hepatitis B in travelers .8-2.4/1000
per month Risk is dependant on exposure, destination and duration.
Hepatitis B Links (See also our section on Hepatitis
Hepatitis B Foundation http://www.hepb.org/
Hepatitis Foundation International http://www.hepfi.org/
Canadian Liver Foundation
HIVand Hepatitis.com http://www.hivandhepatitis.com/index.html