Hepatitis A is a single-stranded RNA virus, which multiplies within liver and Kupffer cells.
Hepatitis A has a two week incubation period, but may be asymptomatic. An acute presentation of hepatitis A may involve:
- Abdominal pain
Hepatitis A is transmitted via an oro-faecal route. It is usually seen in epidemics, often in Autumn, in overcrowded areas. In some areas of underdeveloped countries, such as Yemen, there is a 100% infection rate by the age of 10. Flooding often results in a sharp increase in infections.
This infection is very rarely life threatening, and does not develop into a chronic phase like other forms of hepatitis.
This is a RNA herpesvirus that causes a hepatitis extremely similar to that of Hep. A. It is transmitted enterally, and by animals guts too. While there is normally no progression to chronic liver disease, mortality is around 1-2%, but 20% for pregnant women!