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Hepatitis

At Barnes-Jewish West County Hospital, our expert physicians want to help you manage your hepatitis so you can live life to the fullest. We treat all types of hepatitis and offer access to innovative treatments that fight the virus based on its DNA profile.

Hepatitis Care at Barnes-Jewish West County Hospital: Why Choose Us

We offer advanced, personalized care in a convenient location. Our program also features:

  • Access to innovative, new treatments: Through our Washington University physicians, you may be eligible to participate in a research study that uses investigational treatments for hepatitis. Learn more about participating in clinical trials through the Washington University School of Medicine.
  • Big-hospital amenities in a warm, community setting: You can access all the services a large hospital provides (including emergency care for hepatitis) while receiving the personalized care only a small facility can offer.
  • Ease of access: When you require routine lab work or other monitoring procedures, it’s easy to pull into our spacious, free parking lot from either Olive Boulevard or Barnes West Drive.

What is Hepatitis?

The word hepatitis means ‘liver inflammation.’ Many conditions can cause the liver to become inflamed. However, when we talk about hepatitis, we’re usually referring to one of the viruses that cause liver inflammation.

What is Hepatitis A?

This strain of hepatitis is spread by contact with a person’s stool. This can happen if someone infected with hepatitis A does not wash his or her hands thoroughly after using the bathroom and then touches food others will be eating.

You also can get hepatitis A by:

  • Having unprotected sex with an infected person
  • Drinking untreated water in locations (usually foreign) with poor hygiene standards
  • Putting a contaminated object or body part (like a finger) into your mouth

Symptoms of hepatitis A include:

  • Feeling like you have the flu
  • Jaundice (yellowing of the whites of the eyes and/or skin)

Hepatitis A may go away on its own, but it can last up to six months. If you suspect you may have contracted hepatitis A, you should seek medical care.

You can prevent hepatitis A by getting a vaccination against it.

What is Hepatitis B?

Hepatitis B spreads through contact with infected bodily fluids, including blood and semen. If you get hepatitis B, you may feel as if you have the flu. 

Other symptoms of hepatitis B include:

  • Jaundice (yellowing of the whites of the eyes and/or skin)
  • Dark urine
  • Pale-colored bowel movements 

Hepatitis B often goes away on its own. However, it also can become chronic and last a lifetime. If you suspect you may have hepatitis B, you should see a medical professional for a simple blood test that will tell you if you have it. 

You can prevent hepatitis B by taking a three-injection vaccination series. This vaccination is available for both children and adults.

What is Hepatitis C?

Hepatitis C is caused by the hepatitis C virus (HCV).

Hepatitis C often has no symptoms. If you do experience symptoms, they are often similar to symptoms associated with other types of hepatitis, including:

  • Flu-like symptoms
  • Jaundice
  • Dark-colored urine or pale stools

Hepatitis C Risk Factors and Treatment

The hepatitis C virus is most commonly spread through direct contact with an infected person’s blood. You can get hepatitis C through:

  • Unprotected sex with an infected person
  • Sharing a needle, even if you only do it once or did it decades ago
  • Touching infected blood on objects and then rubbing your eye or putting your finger in your mouth without washing thoroughly

People of the ‘baby boomer’ generation (born between 1946 and 1964) may have hepatitis C and not know it. Our expert physicians urge everyone over age 50 to get screened for hepatitis C if they ever shared a needle (even back in the 1960s) or have had multiple sex partners during their lifetime.

There is no cure for hepatitis C, but it can be treated with medications. Left untreated, hepatitis C can cause liver cancer.

Our experienced doctors offer leading-edge therapies for hepatitis C, including:

  • Targeted medications based on your HCV genotype (the specific genetic material contained in your strain of the virus)
  • Latest drugs available, including those recently approved by the FDA
  • All-oral medication regimens for most patients—no needle sticks or IV lines

Contact Us

For more information or to schedule an appointment with a gastroenterologist, call Barnes-Jewish West County Hospital at 314.542.WEST (9378) or toll-free at 844.542.9378.

We are conveniently located just one mile west of I-270 on Olive Blvd., at Olive and Mason in Creve Coeur, Missouri - a west county suburb of St. Louis, Missouri. Get directions to our hospital.

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Find a doctor or make an appointment: 314.542.WEST (9378) OR TOLL-FREE 1.844.542.9378
General Information: (314) 996.8000
12634 Olive Boulevard
Creve Coeur, Missouri 63141
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