HAV does not result in chronic infection. Instead, it is self-limited and usually resolves within 2 months of infection. In rare cases, HAV can cause liver failure and death. Most children under 6 years old do not have any symptoms. Once an individual has been exposed, they will produce protective antibodies against the virus for the reminder of their life.
Since HAV is self-limited, there have not been large investments to develop antiviral treatments. Instead, those with active symptoms are treated with rest, encouraged to keep hydrated, eat a healthy diet, and work with their healthcare provider in order to manage symptoms. Though it usually takes several weeks for symptoms to subside, it can take up to several months to fully recover from the symptoms of HAV.