Before winter, update on the epidemic of pediatric hepatitis

Six months after the wave of acute hepatitis in young children, recorded in particular in the United Kingdom, we do not know what could have happened. The available data do not explain the phenomenon. As temperatures drop and the circulation of winter viruses intensifies, experts remain calm but vigilant.

Why are we talking about it. In April 2022, pediatric services in the United Kingdom reported an abnormally high number of acute hepatitis in children, most often under the age of five. These were serious forms, all requiring specialized care and having led to liver transplantation or even death in a few cases. Surprising fact: the sick children were not carriers of the viruses generally responsible for these attacks, the hepatitis A, B, C or E viruses.

The World Health Organization (WHO) quickly relayed the alert and today there are more than 1,000 cases, including at least 250 in the United Kingdom and 334 in the United States. Over 20 deaths have been reported and over 40 cases have required liver transplantation.

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