In the case of autoimmune hepatitis, genes and environmental factors seem to work together to cause an immune reaction. Someone can have the genetic makeup to develop autoimmune hepatitis but never get sick. This, scientists believe, is because the damaged genes require an environmental trigger to become activated. It is not possible, however, to avoid these environmental triggers, for the most part. The environmental factors that cause autoimmune hepatitis are things like viruses and certain medications. Everyone comes down with viruses sometimes, even despite meticulous hygiene. Medications are sometimes necessary, and there is no way to predict if a certain one will cause an autoimmune disease.
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