Local News

Friday Is Deadline For Raleigh Shoppers To Get Hepatitis A Shots

Posted August 30, 2002

— The state health department is urging people who bought or ate deli items from the Cameron Village Harris Teeter between August 10 and August 18 to get shots to prevent

hepatitis A

.

Treatment for hepatitis A is effective only if received within 14 days of exposure, making Friday the deadline.

So far, more than 6,100 people have recieved free vaccinations.

As many as 7,500 customers who purchased and ate food prepared in the deli/deli restaurant area at Harris Teeter in Cameron Village between August 10 and August 18 are at risk of contracting the disease after it was diagnosed in a store employee.

Since Saturday, Wake County Human Services has offered immune globulin shots, a preventive treatment, to any customer who purchased and ate food at that location between those dates. Bakery or salad bar items are not included.

Hepatitis A is a virus that causes inflammation of the liver. The virus is spread by close personal contact, by inadequately washed hands, and through contaminated food and drink.

Immune globulin is not necessary for individuals who have received one dose of hepatitis A vaccine at least one month prior to exposure.

The immune globulin will be offered from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday at the Wake County Human Services Public Health Center, at 10 Sunnybrook Road in Raleigh.

Hepatitis A can range from a very mild illness with no symptoms to illness requiring hospitalization. Symptoms usually appear 30 days after exposure to the virus, though the time can range from 15-50 days.

Symptoms include weakness, fever, loss of appetite, nausea, abdominal discomfort, yellowing of the skin or eyes, pale colored stools and very dark urine.

Persons that were exposed during the dates of August 10 through 14 are no longer eligible for the injection and should see their physician immediately if they develop any of the symptoms.

Most people recover from hepatitis A infection with no long-term effects. Adults are more likely to exhibit symptoms than children.

Hepatitis A can be prevented by vaccination and thorough handwashing.

For more information about potential exposure or clinic hours, call (919) 250-3097.

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