HealthFirst Triage Nurse Jiselle Bogardus, Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN)

Hi, my name is Jiselle.  I’m one of the nurses on staff here at HealthFirst in Franklin.  I have been a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) for twenty-two years.

Did you know that adults as well as children need vaccines?  HealthFirst offers a variety of vaccines for adults such as Tetanus, Diptheria, Acellular Pertussis (Tdap), Pneumococcal 23 and Prevnar 13 (Pneumonia vaccines), Zostavax (Shingles vaccine), Human Papilloma Virus (HPV), Hepatitis A and Hepatitis B.

Today, I’d like to concentrate on Hepatitis B.

Hepatitis B is a virus that can affect your liver.  Symptoms can include fever, fatigue, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, jaundice (yellow skin or eyes), dark urine, clay colored bowel movements, and/or pain in muscles, joints or stomach.  It can cause liver damage, liver cancer or death.

Hepatitis B is spread when blood, semen or other infected body fluids come into contact with a non-infected person; for example, from birthing, sharing razors or toothbrushes, contact with blood (even dried blood), through an open sore, having unprotected sex, sharing needles, syringes or other drug injection equipment, needle sticks or other sharp objects.

Who is at risk?  ALL ADULTS.  But especially those who have diabetes, alcoholism or drug addiction (to mention a few).

The good news is that prevention is easy.  The Hepatitis B vaccine is a three injection series, spread out over a six-month period.  Call HealthFirst and make an appointment to see the nurse.  We will work together with you to keep you healthy!

Links used in this article:

CDC fact sheet on the Hepatitis B Vaccine
http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/hcp/vis/vis-statements/hep-b.pdf

US Department of Veterans Affairs overview of the liver
http://www.hepatitis.va.gov/patient/basics/liver-overview.asp

Mayo Clinic prevention tips
http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/hepatitis-b/basics/prevention/CON-20022210

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