What is Hepatitis B?
Hepatitis B is caused by a virus that infects the liver. It is one of the most common vaccine-preventable diseases affecting travelers and can cause either acute or chronic infection.
How is it transmitted?
Hepatitis B is highly infectious, and is spread from one person to another through exposure to infected blood and body fluids (including semen and vaginal fluid). It can be spread through:
- blood transfusions or organ transplantation in countries where blood or blood products have not been properly screened for hepatitis B and other viruses transmitted through blood
- unprotected sex with an infected person
- sharing needles or equipment for injecting drugs
- unsterilized medical/dental equipment and shared/contaminated materials or equipment used for tattooing, body piercing or acupuncture
- sharing toothbrushes or razors
- childbirth (an infected mother to her infant)
- household contact between family members
Recombivax HB Vaccine
Recombivax HB can be given to adults over 20 years of age.