Harrisburg, PA – There’s been a significant rise in cases of Hepatitis A in Pennsylvania. Like other forms of hepatitis, it’s also a highly contagious liver infection caused by a virus.

While you’re most likely to get Hepatitis A from contaminated food or water, or from close contact with another person who is infected, the increase in the number of cases seems to be particularly affecting people who use dirty syringes to inject drugs.

Even if you yourself are not using drugs, you’re at higher for contracting Hep A because more people are unknowingly spreading the virus.

The good news is that mild cases don’t require treatment and most people who are infected recover completely with no permanent liver damage. The symptoms are very close to what you might experience if you get the flu.

Practicing good hygiene, including washing hands frequently, is one of the best ways to protect against Hepatitis A. Vaccines are also available for people most at risk.

For more information on Hepatitis A, visit the Department of Health website at www.health.pa.gov or follow them on Facebook and Twitter.