Hepatitis B can cause contagious liver disease.
In some people, hepatitis B can lead to a serious, lifelong illness that may be life threatening.
How does someone get hepatitis B?
Hepatitis B spreads when blood, semen or other bodily fluids from a person with hepatitis B virus enters the body of an uninfected person. This can happen from:
- Birth (from mother to baby).
- Sex with a person that has hepatitis B.
- Sharing needles, syringes or other drug-injection supplies.
- Sharing razors or toothbrushes with an infected person.
- Direct contact with blood or open sores of an infected person.
- Exposure to blood from a needle stick or other sharp object.
People born in Asia, Africa and other regions with higher rates of hepatitis B should be tested.
Hepatitis B is preventable.
Hepatitis B vaccines are safe and effective. Talk to your doctor or visit the immunizations page to learn about free vaccine resources.
People who are at high risk for hepatitis A or B may be eligible for free immunizations at Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department.
Call our hepatitis program at (253) 798-6410.