is mainly transmitted through blood-to-blood contact.
with hepatitis B can have hepatitis D. However, some people are infected with
both viruses at the same time (simultaneous infection). There is a risk of
infection for: people who have multiple sexual partners; healthcare workers who
have contact with blood or blood products; infants of mothers who have the
viruses; people who share needles, syringes or other equipment to use drugs.
‘Superinfection’, when a person has chronic hepatitis B virus and then becomes
infected with hepatitis D, is particularly dangerous. In this case the liver is
often damaged faster than if someone becomes infected with both viruses at the same
is successfully vaccinated against hepatitis B, they are also protected against
contracting hepatitis D. Other ways to protect yourself include safer sex and
using protective gloves when in contact with blood. Any spilled blood should be
cleaned with disinfectant. Don’t share objects that may have traces of blood on
them, such as razors, needles or toothbrushes.
When somebody who already has a viral infection is exposed to a different strain or a different virus, and acquires it in addition to their existing virus. For example a person with hepatitis C is infected with a different strain of hepatitis C, or a person with chronic hepatitis B is infected with hepatitis D.