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Clin Lab Med. 1999 Sep;19(3):661-73.

Enterically transmitted hepatitis. Hepatitis A and E viruses.

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  • 1Clinical Microbiology Laboratory, Fletcher Allen Health Care, Burlington, Vermont, USA.


Enterically-transmitted hepatitis is caused by hepatitis A virus and hepatitis E virus. The most important agent is hepatitis A virus, which is distributed worldwide and infects all age groups. Most infections in children are minimally symptomatic and immunity is long-lasting, so severe disease tends to occur in nonimmune adults. Hepatitis E virus is found in the developing world and has a greater propensity for symptomatic infection of children. Both agents are transmitted via contaminated water, often through food vehicles.

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