The liver is an essential organ of the body which helps in digestion of food, removal of toxins from the blood, and storage of energy in the body. Inflammation of the liver usually due to viral infections, excessive alcohol consumption, and drugs can cause hepatitis. Hepatitis can be classified as hepatitis A, hepatitis B, hepatitis C, hepatitis D, and hepatitis E through laboratory testing. Acute infection may occur with no symptoms or limited symptoms such as jaundice, dark urine, nausea, extreme fatigue, vomiting, and abdominal pain. Hepatitis A is causes abdominal pain, jaundice, fever, nausea, and fatigue. The symptoms of hepatitis B include mild fever, diarrhea, muscle ache, skin rashes, and headache. Hepatitis C is a contagious liver disease that greatly damages the liver. Hepatitis B and C are most commonly cause of liver cancer, and cirrhosis. Hepatitis A and E are mainly caused by the ingestion of contaminated food. Hepatitis B, C, and D spread when a healthy person comes in contact with the bodily fluids of an infected person, receipt of contaminated blood or blood products, invasive medical procedure using contaminated equipment and by sexual contact. People suffering from hepatitis are tested with a range of markers depending on the symptoms exhibited, clinical history, and other tests. For instance, hepatitis B surface antigen is the vital marker for the screening and diagnosis of the hepatitis B virus. Similarly, anti-HAV IgM is a marker for the diagnosis of the hepatitis A virus.
Chronic hepatitis is diagnosed through liver biopsy and blood tests. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), globally, 130 million to 150 million people suffer from chronic hepatitis C. Furthermore, globally, every year about 20 million and 1.4 million people are infected by hepatitis E and A respectively. WHO initiates various hepatitis awareness programs to reduce the transmission of agents that cause viral hepatitis, and, in turn, reduce the morbidity and mortality rates of the disease.
North America dominates the global market for hepatitis marker testing due to rising incidence of hepatitis in the region. The global hepatitis marker testing market in Asia is expected to expand significantly in the next five years. China and India are expected to be the fastest growing hepatitis marker testing markets in the Asia-Pacific region. The key driving forces for the hepatitis marker testing market in developing countries include a large pool of patients, increasing awareness programs about the disease, and rising government funding.
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