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Mystery outbreak of severe acute hepatitis in children

An outbreak of severe acute hepatitis in healthy children – that triggered a liver failure in a few kids – is probably connected to adenovirus contamination, the US health body CDC (Centres for Disease Control and Prevention) stated in a record published on Friday.

From October to November 2021, a total of 9 children from geographically distinct parts of the state have been diagnosed in a Children’s health facility in Alabama. “Adenovirus was detected in whole blood specimens from all patients by real-time PCR testing,” the CDC stated in its record.

What is Adenovirus?

Adenoviruses are common viruses that cause a variety of illnesses. They can cause cold-like symptoms, fever, sore throat, bronchitis, pneumonia, diarrhea, and purple eye (conjunctivitis). You can get adenovirus contamination at any age.

How does it spread

“Adenoviruses can spread through an infected person’s stool, for example, during diaper changing. Adenovirus can also spread through the water, which includes swimming pools, but this is less common,” CDC says.

Adenoviruses are normally spread from an infected person to others via:

-Close personal contact, which includes touching or shaking hands

-The air through coughing and sneezing

-Touching an object or surface with adenoviruses on it, then touching your mouth, nose, or eyes earlier than washing your hands

169 cases, 17 liver transplants, 1 death mentioned until April 21

As of April 21, at least 169 cases of acute hepatitis have been mentioned in children aged 1 month to 16 years old from eleven countries, the international health body WHO stated in its latest update. Of this, the United Kingdom alone accounts for 114 instances observed through Spain, Israel and the US. At least 17 youngsters have required liver transplants and one affected person has died.

Hepatitis is an inflammation of the liver most generally because of viruses, however medicinal drugs and toxins also can cause the condition. The United Kingdom first mentioned an unexpected significant growth in instances of severe acute hepatitis of unknown beginning in young, normally formerly healthy children. The unexpected growth of such instances has now been mentioned through numerous different countries, the WHO stated.

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