Hepatitis A | Hepatitis B | Hepatitis C
Hepatitis A is transmitted through the oral-fecal route. Sexually, this infection is transmitted by oral-anal sex (rimming). Sexually transmitted hepatitis A tends to occur more commonly among gay men. Outbreaks of hepatitis A among gay men are a recurring problem in many large cities in Western nations. There is now a very effective vaccine to prevent infection with hepatitis A. Unfortunately, despite the higher rates of hepatitis A infection among gay men, most members of the gay community are unaware of this vaccine. Most gay men who are at risk for this infection have never been vaccinated, despite the availability of the vaccine.
In addition to the risks of hepatitis A, rimming may also pose a risk for certain bacterial and parasitic infections, due to potential exposure to feces while rimming is taking place.
Symptoms may include:
- A short, mild, flu-like illness
- Nausea and vomiting
- Loss of appetite
- Weight loss
- Jaundice (yellow skin and whites of eyes, darker yellow urine and pale feces)
- Itchy skin
- People may have no symptoms at all, but they can still pass on the hepatitis virus to others.
There is no specific treatment for Hepatitis A. Rest is recommended during the acute phase of the disease when the symptoms are most severe. People with acute Hepatitis should avoid alcohol and any substances that are toxic to the liver, including acetominophen (Tylenol).
The spread of Hepatitis A can be prevented. The most effective method of prevention is to get vaccinated for Hepatitis A. There is a combination vaccination for Hepatitis A and B. Additional prevention measures should be taken such as, using dental dams and washing your hands after sex. Wash your hands thoroughly before meals, after using restrooms and before preparing food. Click on the following link for a list of Hepatitis resources. If you're sexually active, sign-up for FREE STD testing reminders via email, text or both every 3 or 6 months at WeAllTest.com. If We All Test, we can help eliminate syphilis and other STDs in our community!