Hepatitis B is one of several viral infections that can affect the liver.
Hepatitis B is spread by contact with body fluids–blood, semen, vaginal fluids, and saliva—and can be passed to newborns from infected mothers.
At least half of those infected have no symptoms, but all of those who are infected can pass the virus on to other people.
Infected people who do have symptoms may experience nausea, fever, fatigue, dark urine, abdominal pain, enlarged liver, and jaundice.
The Hepatitis B virus can damage the liver permanently, and it is estimated this virus causes about 80 percent of all liver cancers.
There is no cure for hepatitis, but the Hepatitis B vaccine is more than 90 percent effective in preventing infection.
It is a safe vaccine and has been used in Canada for more than 20 years.
The 2011-12 Hepatitis B immunization campaign again will target Grade 7 students.
Public health nurses will give students two injections over a six-month period using a vaccine product licensed for adolescents aged 11-15.
Questions? Visit www.nwhu.on.ca