HEPATITIS B is an infectious liver disease caused by a blood-borne virus called the hepatitis B virus or HBV.An individual infected with hepatitis B will have an acute phase of hepatits, with or without symptoms.In some cases, the infected person’s own immune response will clear most of the HBV infection, but in about 5% of infected adults, their immune systems are unable to clear the HBV. This results in ongoing virus replication in the liver.HBV infection is the most common chronic viral infection in the world and is also very common in South Africa.Acute hepatitis C: Hepatitis C is a short-term infection with the hepatitis C virus. Symptoms can last up to six months. The infection sometimes clears up because your body is able to fight off the infection and get rid of the virus.Chronic hepatitis C: This is a long-lasting infection with the virus. It occurs when the body cannot get rid of the virus. Most hepatitis C infections become chronic.Without treatment, chronic hepatitis C can cause liver cancer or severe liver damage that leads to liver failure. Liver failure occurs when the liver stops working properly. You cannot survive without a liver.