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What is the most common hepatitis and its symptoms and what does elevated enzyme mean?

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What is the most common of the hepetitis's and give me the symptoms. And does an elevated enzyme in your liver mean what?
Posted Tue, 8 Oct 2013 in Liver and Gall Bladder
Answered by Dr. Prasad 45 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Hepatitis B...

Detailed Answer:

1. Technically, hepatitis - where there is inflammation of liver - is caused my a large set of infections. Of this larger set, virus dominates the list. So if some one asks me what common causes of hepatitis are, I would say "viral infection is the most common cause".
But I am not sure you are looking infection as a whole and that you are looking only for "Hepatitis virus". Therefore based on the current statistical data, Hepatitis A, B and C are the common ones. Of these B dominates as it is reported more often than A and C.

2. Symptoms of hepatitis is classified as acute and chronic. Acute infection presents with abdominal pain, fever, low appetite, nausea and vomiting generalised weakness and pain - just like any flu infection. Jaundice starts to appear gradually with sclera and urine turning to yellow.
Individuals who don't recover here go on to chronic stage where liver gradually and slowly gets damaged leading to fibrosis and cirrhosis.

3. We have different types of liver enzymes. The comparative elevation of various enzymes help us predict what might be going wrong. In general elevated liver enzyme might mean infection, alcohol use, drug induced elevation, gall stones - gall bladder inflammation and so on.
I would be able to answer this better if you can elaborate more - exact area of pain in relation to the belly button, type and nature of pain and its relation to food. I would also like to know what enzymes are elevated and by how much.
Besides the aforementioned symptoms did you notice any other unusual symptoms. Have you been drinking alcohol or using ungoverned medications and so on.

Awaiting your reply...

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: What is the most common hepatitis and its symptoms and what does elevated enzyme mean? 12 hours later
The pain is in my lower right side of my belly button. It is sever cramping. I get constipation and diarrhea with the pain. So, that is hard to say. Any food brings it on, anytime I eat anything it doesn't matter. I did over abuse aceteminophen when I was younger. And was told that was one reason I had catarcts in both eyes. And yes there is a history of alcohol abuse. But very very rarely have a drink now. I am not sure about the enzyme levels or which enzyme. I have recently had blood tests and I noticed they were for the hepatites viruses. I haven't had the jaunice but I have had very strong smelling and dark yellow urine. And the nausea and vomiting and flu like symptoms. For quite sometime.
Any help further would be appreciated.
Answered by Dr. Prasad 4 hours later
Brief Answer:
Liver inflammation is unlikely...

Detailed Answer:

Glad to hear from you.

The location and type of pain and your other symptoms are not the classical representation of hepatitis. Your symptoms are similar to intestinal cramps.

If the symptoms are very recent ones, I usually try a course of antibiotic (for intestinal parasites) before progressing to investigate further. However if the symptoms are long standing ones, you need to be evaluated further.

I do not favour viral hepatitis because most of my patients with hepatitis complain of upper abdominal pain either below the breast bone or on the right side under ribs. They have nausea and vomiting more than constipation / diarrhea. Moreover jaundice eventually shows up.

Without further details about liver enzymes, it's not easy to predict the cause. But I am guessing it might be the effects of long term alcohol drinks. It's good that you have stopped now. Your doctors might consider an ultrasound scan, a thyroid check and if needed stool studies and colonoscopy to determine what's troubling you now.

Besides all the organic causes, many a times stress and anxiety have a strong relation to these symptoms. I do not mean that your symptoms are only in your head; but it is necessary that you stay relaxed and work with a gastroenterologist. You should be able to find the cause and treat it. Hepatitis is unlikely....

Hope this helps. Feel free to write back if you need clarification before we close this discussion.

Good luck!!
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