An Abuja based general physician on Wednesday advised Nigerians to go for regular medical check-up to prevent

Dr Patrick Ezeogu told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja that hepatitis was an inflammation of the liver caused by hepatitis virus Type A, B, C, D and E.

He said that many people suffering from the disease were not aware of it because the symptoms do not appear on the body.

He said that Hepatitis `A’ could be contacted from eating contaminated food.

“It can also be spread through poor sanitation, poor personal hygiene, drinking unclean water or eating unwashed fruits or vegetables.”

He said that Hepatitis `B’ could be contacted through sharing needles, razor or toothbrush with an infected person.

He also said that other ways of contracting Hepatitis B included having multiple partners or from a mother to her unborn child.

“You, however cannot contract Hepatitis B through handshake, sneezing, coughing or sharing foods or drinks,” he said.

Ezeogu explained that Hepatitis `C’ could damage the liver or cause liver cancer.

“Without diagnosis and treatment, one third of those infected with viral hepatitis will die as a result of liver disease,” he warned.

According to him, symptoms of Hepatitis C include headache, constipation, joint aches, abdominal pain and loss of appetite.

He said that there were vaccines that could be taken to prevent hepatitis or suppress the virus that caused the disease.

“People need to get treatment if they have contracted any type of Hepatitis and go for regular medical check-up to ensure that they are hepatitis-free,” Ezeogu said.