WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Parents, listen up.
A local urgent care doctor says pay close attention to children for hepatitis A exposure. Depending on their age, children might not show the same symptoms like adults.
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It’s something to keep in mind as kids join summer camps and play with other children this summer. If they are exposed to hepatitis A, you may not know it.
“Pediatric patients, we’re often a little more concerned about. Children less than 6 (years old) often won’t show very many symptoms, so we have to watch them closely,” said MD Now Urgent Care Centers Chief Medical Officer Dr. Jeffrey Collins.
Symptoms for hepatitis A can sometimes be confused as regular flu like symptoms. If you’re not sure, go see a doctor.
Collins says the best prevention is a vaccine even if you are not sure if you have received it before.
“There’s no harm in doing the series again. They can often sometimes check on antibodies,” said Collins.
He says if you get tested for antibodies, you can learn if you’re already resistant to it. He says if you do get it, it will take time, rest and fluids to recuperate.
“Basically, your body will develop immunoglobulins or antibodies to the virus, so you’ll never be at risk of catching hepatitis A again,” said Collins.
He said the cost of the vaccine depends on insurance but usually runs about $60.
He says one thing to remember about the virus is that it lives on surfaces at room temperature for months, so using germicidal wipes is recommended.