Hepatitis B Singapore | Shim Clinic

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Hepatitis B is an infection of the liver caused by the Hepatitis B virus.

Hepatitis B infection is caused by the Hepatitis B virus and is usually screened for by detecting HBsAg in the blood. Immunity may be discerned by detecting HBsAb, and if absent, the Hepatitis B vaccine or Twinrix® vaccine may be given.

  • The hepatitis B virus is 100 times more infectious than HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, and infects about 10 times more people than HIV worldwide.
  • Hepatitis B virus infects the liver, and more than 350 million people in the world are lifelong hepatitis B virus carriers.
  • Long-term hepatitis B virus infection causes at least one million premature deaths every year from cirrhosis of the liver or liver cancer. It is second only to tobacco as the leading cause of cancer in humans.
  • Among the Hepatitis B carriers, 25% will develop serious liver diseases, including chronic hepatitis, cirrhosis, and hepatocellular carcinoma.
  • The hepatitis B virus can be passed from an infected mother to her baby during childbirth, 1 in 20 Singaporeans are chronically infected with hepatitis B virus.





Hepatitis B virus (HBV) is a DNA Hepadna virus that causes an infection of the liver. Transmission is through blood or body fluids viz. mother-to-child transmission, sexual intercourse, transfusion of contaminated blood, and sharing of needles and syringes.

Sporadic infection occurs in people without apparent risk factors, in institutions for learning difficulties and also in children in countries of high endemicity, but in these cases the means of transmission is poorly understood.

A total of 65 cases of acute hepatitis B infections were reported in 2010. The overall age-standardised prevalence of HBsAg among Singapore residents aged 18 to 69 years decreased significantly from 4.0% in HBSS 1999 to 2.8% in HBSS 2005 (p = 0.002).



  1. 2017 interim update of the 2015 BASHH National Guidelines for the Management of the Viral Hepatitides https://www.bashhguidelines.org/media/1161/viral-hepatitides-2017-update-18-12-17.pdf
  2. Hong, W.W., Ang, L.W., Cutter, J.L., James, L., Chew, S.K., & Goh, K.T. (2010). Changing Seroprevelance of Hepatitis B Virus Markers of Adults in Singapore. Retrieved from http://www.annals.edu.sg/pdf/39VolNo8Aug2010/V39N8p591.pdf
  3. Ministry of Health. (2011). Chronic Hepatitis B Infection – MOH Clinical Practice Guidelines 2/2011. Retrieved from http://www.moh.gov.sg/content/dam/moh_web/HPP/Doctors/cpg_medical/current/2011/cpg-Chronic%20Hep%20B%20Infection%20-%20Mar%202011.pdf
  4. Workowski, K. & Berman, S. (2010). CDC Sexually Transmitted Disease Treatment Guidelines (2010). Retrieved from http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/rr5912a1.htm




Hepatitis B treatment is available!

Sexual risk (of HIV/STD/pregnancy), and what you can do before and after exposure.
Timeline HIV STD Pregnancy
Before exposure
Abstain from sex, Be faithful, or Condom use
Circumcision (males only)
Contraception (females only)
HIV PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis) - Stop HIV infection before exposure STD vaccine: - Hepatitis vaccine - HPV vaccine
STD / HIV exposure
Unsafe sex / unprotected sex: No condom / Condom broke / Condom slip
0-72 hours HIV PEP (post-exposure prophylaxis) - Stop HIV infection after exposure STD testing * - Screening test - to look for asymptomatic infections - from previous exposures Emergency contraception with the morning-after pill (females only)
2 weeks HIV DNA Test
1 month HIV 4th Generation Test - SD Bioline HIV Ag/Ab Combo - Fingerprick blood sampling. - 20 minutes to results
3 months HIV 3rd Generation Test - OraQuick® HIV-1/2 Antibody - Oral fluid or - Fingerprick blood sampling. - 20 minutes to results STD testing * - Full & comprehensive - diagnostic test - to look for current infections
Watch for HIV Symptoms STD Symptoms
If infected HIV Treatment STD Treatment Abortion
* Males: Do not urinate for at least 4 hours before arriving. * Females: testing is more accurate when you are not menstruating.


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