July 20, 2024

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The US and UK are investigating unusual cases of hepatitis in young children

The US and UK are investigating unusual cases of hepatitis in young children

SPublic health officials in the US and UK are investigating several unusual cases of acute hepatitis in young children, the cause or causes of which are currently unknown.

Evidence from the UK and Alabama – nine cases have been reported since last fall – suggests that adenovirus may have been involved. Adenoviruses usually infect the airways and cause colds. But they have been linked to cystitis, infections and sometimes hepatitis, although they rarely affect children without immunity.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in a statement Thursday that it was working with Alabama to investigate the case and work with other state health departments to see if there were any other cases. When the Alabama Department of Public Health issued a warning to physicians in early February, it said it was aware of a case in another state but did not provide details.


“The CDC is aware and working with the Alabama Department of Public Health to investigate nine cases of hepatitis in children aged 1 to 6 who have been tested positive for adenovirus since October 2021,” said Kristen Nordlund, a spokeswoman for the agency. .In a proclamation.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention work with state health departments to determine if there are other cases in the United States and what causes those cases. Now, adenovirus may be the culprit, but researchers are still learning more, including denying the common causes of hepatitis.


Cases have been identified in various parts of the state, and so far there has been no connection between the children in the investigations, said Karen Landers, a doctor at the Alabama Department of Public Health. UK investigators say there is no connection between the cases.

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“It’s not uncommon to see children with severe hepatitis,” Landers, who has been a pediatrician for 45 years, said in an interview with STAT. ‘Look at the children seriously [hepatitis] In the absence of serious underlying health problems, they are extremely rare. That’s what sets us apart in Alabama.

There is a group of adenoviruses that can infect people. Genetic sequencing is performed to determine if one or more types of adenovirus are involved. So far, five children have tested positive for type 41, Landers said.

As the word condition spreads, additional cases can be detected. El Pice newspaper I mentioned Wednesday The newspaper reported that Spain had identified three cases ranging from 2 to 7 years old. One of the children needed a liver transplant.

Helena Guterres, medical director of the Pediatric Liver Transplant Program at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, said children in Alabama are as sick as in the UK. “We have seen a full range of cases ranging from acute hepatitis to severe liver failure,” he told STAT in an email.

Nirav Shah, director of the Maine Disease Control Center and president of the Association of State and Regional Health Officers, said the organization was aware of cases in the UK but had not been notified of any such cases in this country. “We have approached the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to discuss how countries can monitor these events,” he said.

In the UK, where about 75 cases have been reported in the UK and Scotland, some children may or may not need liver transplant surgery.

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Many children in the UK have been tested for SARS-CoV-2 and SARS-CoV-2, the viruses that cause Covit-19. But seems to be the former prime suspect, a Scientific subject On Scottish issues published on Thursday in the online journal Eurosurveillance.

However, the authors suggested that despite the adenovirus infection, there may be an infectious link, and that young children – in many cases under the age of five – may not be exposed to normal levels of germs during infections. Made more vulnerable. When the masks are removed and the social exclusion measures are removed.

Authors from Public Health Scotland wrote: “At the time of publication, the main hypotheses centered on adenovirus – a new variant with a distinct clinical syndrome or that could severely affect young children with immunity,” Royal Hospital said. For Children in Glasgow, Glasgow Center Glasgow Viral Research University.

“The latter situation may be the result of limited social mixing during Govt-19 epidemics,” they said. Five of the thirteen children described in the article tested positive for adenovirus.

Hepatitis – inflammation of the liver – is a condition caused by a number of factors, although viral infections are often the cause. Many hepatitis viruses – A, B, C, D and E – are common causes of hepatitis, but in these cases they are excluded.

Published by the European Center for Disease Control and Prevention Interferes On Tuesday, he urged doctors to diagnose and report cases of severe hepatitis in children 16 and older, by rejecting hepatitis A, B, C, D or E.