Hepatitis A is a liver disease caused by the hepatitis A virus (HAV), and can affect anyone. In the U. S., hepatitis A occurs in situations ranging from isolated cases, to widespread epidemics.
Hepatitis B is a serious disease caused by a virus that attacks the liver. Known as hepatitis B virus (HBV), it can cause lifelong infection, cirrhosis (scarring) of the liver, liver cancer, liver failure, and death.
Hepatitis C is a liver disease caused by the hepatitis C virus (HCV), which is found in the blood of persons who have the disease. HCV is spread by contact with the blood of an infected person.
Hepatitis D is a liver disease caused by the hepatitis D virus (HDV), a defective virus that needs the HBV virus to exist. HDV is found in the blood of persons infected with the virus.
Hepatitis E is a liver disease caused by the hepatitis E virus (HEV), transmitted in much the same way as hepatitis A virus. Hepatitis E, however, does not occur often in the United States.