The world health authorities, more precisely, have recently turned on the alarm against the expansion of a new and rare type of Hepatitiswhich according to its first evidence, particularly affects minors, which is why it has begun to coin the name infantile hepatitis to refer to it, expressing concern, due to its rapid expansion, since several cases of it have already been reported in different countries of the world.
According to the most recent WHO report, the number of reported cases is tending towards 400, located in at least 20 countries, although they clarify that some more are under study; situation in which it could become evident that the number of territories in which it has a presence is even greater.
Regarding this disease, there is also a particularity, and that is that the reported cases, except in the case of the United Kingdom, where the figure is much higher, do not exceed five patients per country.
This virus was initially reported to beginning of aprilhaving as its victims a group of children who do not exceed five years of age, and according to the first hypotheses revealed by experts, it could be associated with the adenovirus, without ruling out any link with covid-19.
The severity of this new disease, which extends the number of hepatitis variants to 6, raises special alarms in the scientific scenario, as deaths associated with the disease have already begun to be registeredso scientists have begun to make extreme efforts to further understand its origin, means of contagion and development, with a view to implementing effective prevention policies that can serve to contain its dangerous spread.
According to the experts, so far the symptomatology to which this disease has been associated is the presence of jaundice (which translates a high concentration of bilirubin in the blood), a situation is accompanied by abdominal pain, and vomitingwhich have led to liver failure that has even suggested that the need for transplants be studied.
In the same sense, other signs of the disease described by the health authorities are the presence of nausea, dark-colored urine, light-colored stools, and yellowing of the skin and eyes.
Regarding its contagion, it has been pointed out that it may be associated with the acquisition of some of the other variants of hepatitis, denouncing that this has an acute connotation, due to the speed with which the inflammation appears and the signs begin to show. her.
In this sense, it is important to bear in mind that in the case of variants A and E, these are associated with intake, or contact, food or water of people who already have the virus.
In the case of variant B, C and D, contagion occurs by contact with fluids; including blood.
Due to the above, and because there is still no clarity established regarding the real origin of the virus, and therefore the real means of its contagion, the health authorities have invited the parents and guardians of the minors to take extreme measures. health, stopping scenarios such as the key ones described in cases of contagion of other diseases, referring to the importance of taking care of the food that is supplied to children, as well as advancing frequent hand washing, and Be careful with scenarios where they may be in contact with other people’s fluids.
Along the same path, the call from the medical authorities is also not to neglect the vaccination schedules for children, recalling that even recently, in the case of Latin America, PAHO had expressed special concern about the decline in immunization figures, or application of the basic childhood vaccination schemereferring to the fact that these figures are not only linked to the pandemic, since this situation had begun to become evident even before.
Thus, it is important to remember that the Hepatitis A vaccine must be given during the first months of life of children, more precisely between one year and two years, a situation that must be inexcusable, even more so, if within the plans there is a displacement to one of the countries that have already confirmed the presence of the disease.
Regarding the eventual presentation of symptoms, specialists refer to the importance of consulting experts, avoiding self-medication, and ensuring rest conditions for the child.
In that sense, they also catch alarms against the use of medications such as Paracetamol, explaining that this could be risky, warning that, if the liver is indeed affected, the body would process said substance as toxic.
Thus, the recommended thing is the abundant supply of liquids.
* With information from AFP