Children in more countries suffer mystery hepatitis

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STOCKHOLM (AFP) – Cases of hepatitis of unknown origin, first detected in UK youngsters, have now been recorded in 4 more European countries and the US, the EU well being company stated on Tuesday (April 19).

On Friday the World Health Organisation stated it was monitoring 84 circumstances of extreme acute hepatitis that had been reported in Britain since April 5 and stated it anticipated more circumstances in coming days.

Cases have now been recorded in youngsters in Denmark, Ireland, the Netherlands and Spain, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) stated in an announcement on Tuesday.

Nine suspected circumstances have additionally been recorded in the US state of Alabama, it stated.

“Investigations are ongoing in all countries reporting cases. At present, the exact cause of hepatitis in these children remains unknown,” the ECDC stated.

In most circumstances the kids didn’t have a fever. But a few of the circumstances in the UK had been so extreme that sufferers needed to be transferred to specialist youngsters’s liver models, whereas six youngsters had liver transplants, each the WHO and ECDC have stated.

The an infection primarily affected youngsters aged underneath 10 and signs included jaundice, diarrhoea, vomiting and stomach ache.

The identified hepatitis viruses, from A to E, haven’t been detected in the kids, so British well being authorities have examined a hyperlink to widespread viruses, or different potential causes like Covid-19, infections or environmental elements.

For the second, investigators suspect that the likeliest trigger is an infection, the ECDC stated.

“No link to the Covid-19 vaccine was identified and detailed information collected through a questionnaire to cases about food, drink and personal habits failed to identify any common exposure,” the ECDC stated.

In France “two cases of acute hepatitis whose etiology is still undetermined have been reported by the Lyon University Hospital” in youngsters underneath 10 years of age and “are currently being investigated”,the general public well being company informed AFP.

“Cases of acute hepatitis of undetermined etiology in children are not rare. The occurrence of these two cases is not unexpected and does not indicate, at this stage, an excess of cases in France,” the supply added.

Meera Chand, director of scientific and rising infections on the UK Health Security Agency, a public well being safety physique, stated on Friday that “normal hygiene measures” equivalent to handwashing “help to reduce the spread of many of the infections that we are investigating”.

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