Topic Overview

Eating raw shellfish, especially oysters, may put you at risk for
hepatitis A.

Bivalves such as oysters and clams filter large amounts of water when
feeding. If shellfish are living in water that has been contaminated with stool
containing the hepatitis A virus, the shellfish may carry the virus. People
then may get it when they eat the raw or undercooked shellfish.

Raw shellfish also may carry other viruses and bacteria that can make
people sick.

Not everyone who eats contaminated raw oysters or other raw shellfish
will become sick. But to reduce the chance of getting sick, make sure that
shellfish have been cooked thoroughly.

Related Information

Credits

ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer E. Gregory Thompson, MD – Internal Medicine
Adam Husney, MD – Family Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer W. Thomas London, MD – Hepatology

Current as ofMarch 3, 2017