This, and more commonly asked questions about Hepatitis, were answered last week at CEH’s Multicultural Community Action Network’s (M-CAN) Hep B awareness session for the Indian Community. The session, titled “Is your liver as healthy as you think?” discussed all things hepatitis B, including prevention and treatment, but also busted a few myths associated with the condition.
Among the various myths busted during the session, the one that stood out was: “Hepatitis B can be transmitted by mosquito bites.”
It’s intuitive to think that when a mosquito bites someone who is infected with hepatitis B and then bites another person, the second person could be exposed to the disease.
The “needle” that mosquitoes feed with is actually a complex structure that has separate channels. When a mosquito bites, it injects saliva through one channel.
However, the blood it sucks as a meal flows in a completely separate channel and only in one direction, toward the mosquito.
So the answer therefore is that it is biologically unlikely for mosquitoes to transmit Hepatitis B.
Find out more about Hepatitis B here.