Dr Mike Omotosho, the President, Hepatitis Zero Nigerian Commission, an NGO, advised against the use of traditional herbs and unprescribed drugs for the treatment of hepatitis disease.
He gave the advice in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Tuesday.
According to him, hepatitis carriers are at risk if they engage in self-medication with herbs and other unprescribed drugs to treat
themselves without proper consultation, diagnosis and prescription from a qualified medical doctor.
He said “being Hepatitis B positive is not a death sentence if detected early and instructions given are followed.
“Carriers should not self medicate with herbs or any other drugs, but adhere to instructions from appropriate medical personnel.’’
He explained that if left untreated, Hepatitis B could develop to chronic or long-term disease, “which is more difficult to manage and can lead to liver failure, liver cancer and even death.’’
Omotosho advised that Hepatitis B positive patients should desist from consuming alcohol, certain drugs, sharing personal items, as well as ensure the utmost hygiene.
He called on the public to ensure they benefitted from the free test, vaccination and treatment carried out by the organisation and others to ensure they were not infected.
“We have noticed that ignorance plays a major factor in the spread of the virus.
“It can be prevented by taking only three doses of the vaccination. You can’t stop people from having body contact with others, but as awareness and sensitisation are being done, people respond but we believe the response ratio needs to improve significantly.’’
He reiterated the commitment of the hepatitis NGO toward ensuring that the disease was totally obliterated in society.
“The Essence of the Hepatitis Zero outreaches is to ensure that we get as many people tested and vaccinated against the hepatitis virus as soon as possible.
“This is so because, among the five strains of the Hepatitis Virus, the B strain has vaccination as the only preventive measure. The hepatitis B virus has no known cure and can only be managed once a person tests positive,’’ he stressed.