You received your Hepatitis B test results but still need help determining if you have antibodies in the normal range. Read this section to understand how best to analyze your HBsAg Test report and how to go about your diagnosis with your healthcare professional.
What Do Hepatitis B Test Results Mean?
The HBsAg Test is used to detect the presence of the hepatitis B surface antigen, a marker for the hepatitis B virus. The test results can have the following meanings:
- Positive (detected): A positive HBsAg Test means you're currently infected with the hepatitis B virus.
- Negative (not detected): A negative test result for HBsAg means you're currently not infected with the hepatitis B virus. However, this does not guarantee that you have not been infected in the past.
It's important to note that false positive or false negative results may sometimes occur in the HBsAg report, and additional tests, such as the Hepatitis B virus DNA test, may be needed to confirm the HBsAg Test results. Some doctors even recommend an HBsAg Test in pregnancy, especially in early prenatal visits. If HBsAg is positive, they recommend getting tested for HBV DNA.
What Is HBsAg Test Normal Range?
HBsAg normal range is negative, meaning that the presence of HBsAg in the blood is not detected. A positive test result indicates that an individual is infected with the hepatitis B virus.
What Medical Conditions Can Cause High HBsAg Level?
A high level of hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) in the blood can indicate chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection. Other medical conditions that can cause a high HBsAg level include:
- Acute HBV infection
- Carrier state of HBV
- Reactivation of HBV in people with a history of HBV infection
However, you must undertake a proper medical evaluation, and additional tests, such as an HBV DNA test, to confirm the diagnosis and determine the cause of elevated HBsAg levels.
What Medical Conditions Can Cause Low HBsAg Level?
Several medical conditions can cause a low HBsAg (hepatitis B surface antigen) level, including:
- Treatment with antiviral medications can suppress the virus and lower the HBsAg level.
- If your immune system is weak, a scenario typical for people with HIV or who are undertaking a cancer treatment
- A naturally occurring decline in HBsAg level is seen over time in some people with chronic hepatitis B.
- The development of hepatitis B immunity following vaccination or natural infection can also lower HBsAg levels.
It's important to note that a low HBsAg level does not necessarily mean the absence of hepatitis B infection, as the virus may still be present in the liver. Therefore, further testing, such as Hepatitis B viral load or antibody tests, is often needed to confirm the status.