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HEPATITIS E

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Hepatitis E is a liver infection caused by the hepatitis E virus (HEV). HEV is spread from ingestion of HEV infected fecal matter, even microscopic amounts of fecal matter can infect an individual with HEV. Symptoms of HEV typically appear 15 to 60 days after exposure and include fever, fatigue, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, jaundice, dark urine, clay-colored stool, and joint pain. Although HEV is not as common in the United States as hepatitis A, B, or C virus, it can be a serious illness that can result in cirrhosis and liver failure. There is no vaccine available to protect against HEV approved for use in the United States. HEV infection can be prevented through good hygiene practices, drinking clean drinking water, and fully cooking pork, venison, and shellfish.

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