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Recovered from jaundice. How long should I wait to eat outside food now?

Jan 2013
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Answered by

Internal Medicine Specialist
Practicing since : 2003
Answered : 1658 Questions
Hi.. I was infected with Viral Hepatitis A three months back. Symptoms I had were : Jaundice with bilirubin as high as 43. Now I have fully recovered. My liver function tests are withing range now.

So my question to you is: How long should I wait to eat outside food now.. It's been so long that I've had a KFC Chicken or anything like that?

One more question, I usually do not drink but I do like to have it sometimes at parties. When can I start doing that again?

And please give an honest answer doctor.. I am a responsible guy.. I do know what is good for my health and what is not. Please do not give answers like you should quit drinking for always and all that.. It'll be really helpful if I could get an honest answer to my queries.
Thank you.
Posted Thu, 6 Sep 2012 in Liver and Gall Bladder
Answered by Dr. Mayank Bhargava 42 minutes later
Thanks for posting your query.
1) Your query showed that your jaundice was due to Viral Hepatitis A and you are not a daily alcohol intaker, so if your liver function test is with in normal range then it indicates normal functioning liver and you can resume alcohol intake. Alcohol intake also should be in limited range.
2) Over 60 clinical studies have suggested that light to moderate alcohol consumption (the equivalent of one 1 ½ oz. of alcohol per day) can increase HDL cholesterol levels (the “good” cholesterol,) and can reduce the incidence of myocardial infarction (heart attack).
3) Meanwhile, American heart association recommend doctors to stop recommending alcohol to their patients as per safety of heart.
4) So you can continue your alcohol occasionally (not for cardiac safety but as per your party need).
5) Regarding outside eating: Whenever we take food in restaurant or motel, we/ other people are not aware of infective status of food. So nobody can predict which food will cause gastroenteritis/ jaundice and which food is safe.
6) If your liver function test is normal and you are asymptomatic then you can start your outside eating but prefer from branded restaurant where hygienic practice is followed for making & serving food.
7) As such there is no food restriction in cases of jaundice, so you can take chicken and other non veg edibles.
Put your query if you have.
Best regards,
Dr. Mayank Bhargava
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Recovered from jaundice. How long should I wait to eat outside food now? 41 minutes later
Thank you very much doctor that was quite helpful.

Few more queries:

1) I am a travel enthusiast (like to trek a lot) and I used to swim everyday (as a form of exercise). I am constantly being advised from 'people' that I should not do any strenuous activities for at least 1 year after Jaundice (otherwise the Jaundice will relapse) even when I do not feel any kind of weakness now. Is that the case so? Please shed some light on this.

2) Can the Jaundice caused due to Viral Hepatitis A relapse? If yes, what can cause it to relapse?
Answered by Dr. Mayank Bhargava 42 minutes later
"People in India are self made doctors and nobody listen suggestions of doctors" This is highly applicable in India and generally give their advise whenever not needed.
Acute viral hepatitis generally takes 2 months for recovery but the initially 1st weak is symptomatic, during which patient may require hospitalization. Once the 1st week id crossed, recovery takes place itself. Weakness, vomiting, abdominal pain, loss of appetite are symptoms in 1st week. if you have recovered and your LFT is normal then you can perform your all routine activities. Fro trekking and swimming, bilirubin doesn't interfere so there is no correlation between jaundice and these activits. You should carry on your activities.
Yes, Acute Viral hepatitis A may reappear with reinfection as virus may remain in liver cells in dormant phase and with decreased immunity, there is increased chances of flare up.
You should resume your daily activities and normal diet for rapid recovery.
Take care,
Dr. Mayank
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Recovered from jaundice. How long should I wait to eat outside food now? 2 hours later
Thank you. That was a big relief for me. :)

One concern regarding the relapse, as you said it may reappear.. What can I do on my part to ensure that it does not relapse?

What are the chances of a relapse? I mean can it also reappear after my LFT reports are normal?

Answered by Dr. Mayank Bhargava 9 hours later
You should take proper and healthy diet, the only thing you can do. As there is no precipitating factor, decreased immunity may exacerbate it.
There are 3-20% chances of relapse. Yes, it may reappear after your normal LFT reports.
Dr. Mayank Bhargava
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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