‘Hepatitis, a global threat’
President, Ondo State chapter of Medical Women Association of Nigeria, (MWAN) Dr.(Mrs) Adenike Enikuomehin has stressed the need for citizens of the state to get involved in massive scale up in Hepatitis screening, diagnosis and adequate care in order to prevent loss of lives.
She revealed this while speaking with The Hope during a sensitisation exercise to mark the 2019 World Hepatitis Day at the Akure Mother and Child Hospital.
According to her, it is important that people screen to know their Hepatitis status and also vaccinate children against it, noting that pregnant women should make it a necessity to screen for Hepatitis B and take adequate prevention for both the mother and unborn child.
Describing viral Hepatitis as one of the biggest global health threat in the world, she explained that Hepatitis is the inflammation of the liver which according to her is one of the largest organ.
Listing bacteria, parasitic and alcohol among others as other causes of Hepatitis, she described Hepatitis A,B,C,D and E as the five viral Hepatitis noting that Hepatitis A and E can cause acute Hepatitis (that is hepatitis which is less than six months).
She stated that Hepatitis B,C and D can cause chronic Hepatitis which according to her can be contacted through unscreened blood transfusion, sharing of objects and sexual inter course with an infected person and added that “for children, there is vertical transfusion from child to child through biting, sharing of toys etc.”
While speaking further, she however noted that untreated Hepatitis leads to liver Cancer saying “that is why this year we are saying invest in eliminating Hepatitis by screening to know your status.”
Also speaking, a Pediatrician, Mother and Child Hospital, Akure, Dr.(Mrs) Patricia Eniowo affirmed that children can be affected especially when they are adequately vaccinated adding that “it can be contacted through contacted sharps used in circumcission.”
She however stressed the need for parents to give priority to their children’ vaccination against it.
Another member of the association, Dr.(Mrs) Folasade Akinwande noted that the day in collaboration with the Department of Medicine, UNIMED Akure complex has been assigned to sensitise people especially health workers on the need to know their status.
She explained that it was brought to the door step of health workers due to their tight schedule in order to enable them attend to their health especially when tested negative to it.
The day offered free screening for Hepatitis B, High Blood Pressure, random blood sugar, weight and height among others.