Collaboration between community and specialist services is key to managing the increasing burden of chronic liver disease, which may lead to cirrhosis, liver failure and liver cancer. Chronic hepatitis B and C, which account for about 8% of the chronic liver disease in Australia, are discussed in this article.
- Chronic hepatitis B and chronic hepatitis C represent about 8% of all cases of chronic liver disease in Australia.
- The rising prevalence of chronic liver disease contributes to increasing rates of cirrhosis, liver failure and liver cancer.
- Chronic hepatitis B and C can be asymptomatic in the early stages of infection.
- Screening at-risk populations for hepatitis B virus and/ or hepatitis C virus will identify patients who require further management to prevent disease progression.
- Highly effective antiviral treatments are available to treat chronic hepatitis B and chronic hepatitis C.
- Patients with advanced fibrosis or cirrhosis of any cause should be referred to a liver specialist.
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