Experts believe most cases are currently undetected and children’s immune systems may have been weakened after repeated lockdowns
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Three other children in the UK contracted a mysterious form of hepatitis and two others required liver transplants.
UK Health Security said cases of hepatitis in children under 10 had risen to 111 as of April 20. Of these, 10 received a liver transplant.
Most children are under the age of five and their condition began with nausea and diarrhea, followed by jaundice.
It comes a day after the World Health Organization said a child had died from the disease.
Experts suspect a virus and do not rule out Covid-19.
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However, the prime suspect is a family of common viruses called adenoviruses, which typically cause a range of mild illnesses, including the common cold, vomiting, and diarrhea. Most people recover without complications.
Some experts believe more cases are out there undetected and that children’s weakened immune systems after repeated lockdowns could be a factor.
dr Meera Chand, UKHSA Director of Infections, said: “The information gathered from our investigations increasingly suggests that this increase in sudden onset hepatitis in children is linked to adenovirus infection.
“However, we are thoroughly investigating other possible causes.
“Parents and guardians should watch for signs of hepatitis, including jaundice, and contact a doctor if they have concerns.
“Normal hygiene practices, such as thorough hand washing and good respiratory hygiene, help curb the spread of many common infections, including adenovirus.
“Children with symptoms of gastrointestinal infection, including vomiting and diarrhea, should stay at home and not return to school or daycare until 48 hours after symptoms have resolved.”
Hepatitis symptoms include dark urine, gray stools, itchy skin, jaundice, high temperature, vomiting, loss of appetite, and muscle and joint pain.
It is usually caused by the hepatitis A through E viruses, but in these cases the children were found not to have them, so the cause is still unknown.
https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/three-british-kids-hit-mystery-26796182 Three British children contracted mysterious hepatitis, while two others required liver transplants