Hepatitis B : What are the symptoms?

A Smart + Strong Site
Subscribe to:
E-newsletters
POZ magazine
JOIN AIDSMEDS YouTube
Hepatitis B
en español

What are the symptoms?

Not everyone who is infected with HBV will experience symptoms of acute hepatitis—between 30 percent and 40 percent of people infected with the virus do not experience any noticeable symptoms. If symptoms do occur, they usually do so within four to six weeks after being infected and can last anywhere from one or two weeks to several months.

The symptoms of acute hepatitis B can include:

  • Yellowing of the skin, whites of the eyes, and under the fingernails (jaundice)
  • Dark urine and/or pale stool
  • Feeling tired and rundown (fatigue)
  • Fever
  • Abdominal pain
  • Loss of appetite
  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea
  • Joint pain

If the immune system is not able to control acute HBV infection within six months, symptoms of chronic hepatitis B are possible. Not everyone with chronic hepatitis B experiences symptoms. Some people with chronic hepatitis B experience occasional symptoms, while others experience symptoms that never seem to go away.

Symptoms of chronic hepatitis B can include those typically seen in acute hepatitis B. They tend to be mild to moderate in intensity and typically come and go. Other symptoms can occur, particularly in people who have been dealing with chronic hepatitis B for many years. Additional symptoms include rash, hives (urticaria), arthritis, and burning/tingling in the arms and legs (polyneuropathy).

Less than 1 percent of people infected with HBV may experience a quick and severe (fulminant) infection, which, very rarely,  can lead to liver failure and death. Symptoms of hepatitis, whether acute or chronic, should always be brought to the attention of a healthcare provider.


back next

Last Revised: November 19, 2010

This content is written by the POZ and AIDSmeds editorial team. For more information, please visit our "About Us" page.

TREATMENT NEWS
Liver updates
Hep C Genotype 3 Treatment Results Same in HIV Coinfection

Waistlines Tied to Liver Stiffness in Women With Hep C

Women Spontaneously Clear Hep C Better Than Men

HIV/Hep B Coinfection Responds Very Well to Viread

Liver Cancer Deaths Double in Two Decades

Conditions Outside of AIDS Pose Significant Threat to People With HIV

HIV and Hepatitis C Coinfection Raises Cognitive Impairment Risk for Men

Hep C Protease Inhibitor Incivek Is Safe, Effective for HIV Coinfection

HIV Meds and Alcohol Not a Toxic Mix, Yet Many Skip Doses While Drinking

Multivitamins: More Not Better When HIV Meds are Being Used

Obesity Linked to Chronic Non-AIDS Health Problems in HIV+ People

HIV Therapy Helps Reduce Risk of Non-AIDS Illnesses

Sofosbuvir (GS-7977) Shows Promise in HIV/Hep C-Coinfected People

Black Women With HIV and Hep C Less Likely to Die of Liver-Related Disease

Interferon, High Blood Pressure May be Risk to Vision

CDC Officially Recommends One-Time Hep C Tests for All Baby Boomers

Despite ARV Therapy, HIV/Hep C Patients Face Increased Risk of Serious Liver Disease

Hep C Treatment Failure Can Still Mean Less Liver Inflammation

HIV/Hep C Coinfection and Each Virus by Itself Increase Hip Fracture Risk

1 in 4 Los Angeles Homeless Have Hep C

Hep B Prevalence in U.S. Is Double the CDC’s Estimate

Curative Hep C Treatment Benefits Non-Liver Health and Survival in HIV

CDC Set to Recommend One-Time Hep C Tests for All Baby Boomers

Hep C Risk Highest for Baby Boomers, but Most Haven’t Been Tested

Depression Is Common and Needs Managing Before and During Hep C Interferon Treatment

Risk of Liver-Related Deaths Twice as High With Chronic Hep B Versus Hep C

Facebook to Promote Organ Donation; May Benefit People With Hep C or HIV

FDA to Docs: Best to Avoid Victrelis With Norvir-Boosted HIV Protease Inhibitors

Revised U.S. Guidelines Make Key HIV and Hep C Treatment Recs

Clearing or Curing Acute HCV Does Not Protect Against Reinfection

HCV Testing, Diagnosis Being Overlooked in People With HIV

Marker of Active Hep B Infection Declines in Those Coinfected with HIV, Treated with Tenofovir

ARV Liver Toxicity in HIV/Hep C Coinfected Patients on the Decline

Treating HIV During Pregnancy Also Lowers Risk of Transmitting Hep C to Baby

Incivek, Victrelis Studies Hint at Superior Cure Rates in HIV/HCV Coinfection

Hep C Now Trumps HIV as Cause of Death in U.S.

Merck Warns of Victrelis and HIV Protease Inhibitor Interactions

Many at Risk for Hep B in U.S. Aren't Getting Vaccinated

Experts Issue Early Guide for Hep C Protease Inhibitor Therapy in People Living with HIV

Chronic Hep B Doubles Risk of AIDS Illnesses and Death in People Living With HIV

Victrelis Keeps Hep C Viral Load Undetectable for 24 Weeks in 7 of 10 Coinfected Patients

Despite High CD4s, Unchecked Viral Load Linked to Higher AIDS Risk

Hepatitis C Medication Adherence Is an Important Challenge, Study Shows

New Hep C Treatment Guidelines Spell Out Incivek and Victrelis Use

Hepatitis C in the U.S. May Be Underestimated by Over a Million

BMS Drug Boosts Hep C Cure Rates

Coffee Helps Minimize Hepatitis C Treatment Side Effects

HIV Linked to False Negative Hep C Results Using Some Rapid Assays

DRACO: A Broad-Spectrum Therapy Against Multiple Viruses

Doubled Risk of Death Among Publicly Insured People With HIV in U.S.

Counseling, Drug Treatment Can Increase Hep C Treatment Eligibility

WHO World Hepatitis Day Report: One in 12 Living With Chronic Hep B or C

Hepatitis C Sexually Transmitted between HIV-Positive Men

HIV, Hep C Drug Development Pipeline is 'Robust,' Says Report

Survey Finds Support for Universal Hep C Testing

Liver Damage Increases Tenofovir-Induced Kidney Impairment Risk


> More Treatment News

Search for news stories about this topic

Lesson Index
Collapse All | Up One Level

TALK TO US
Tell us what you think
Poll
Have you visited your health care provider within the last 4 months?
Yes
No


Survey
AIDSmeds Reader Survey

more surveys

[ about AIDSmeds | AIDSmeds advisory board | our staff | advertising policy | advertise/contact us]
© 2014 Smart + Strong. All Rights Reserved. Terms of use and Your privacy.
Smart + Strong® is a registered trademark of CDM Publishing, LLC.