THE FREQUENCY OF NON-A. NON-B HEPATITIS IN ACUTE AND CHRONIC LIVER DISEASE

I Ross, H Madhavan Tan, Sok Hoong, Kamariyah Bte, Abdul Rahim, I Ross, Mrcp Madhavan, Tan Hoong, Msc Kamariyah, Abdul Rahim, N Ross, Universiti Sains (+3 others)
Med. J. Malaysia   unpublished
Serological markers were used to determine the infective agents causing acute viral hepatitis in 246 patients. The frequencies of the five viral infections investigated were: non-A, non-B hepatitis -99 patients (40.2%); hepatitis A-98 patients (39.8%); hepatitis B-43 patients (17.5%); cytomegalovirus » 4 patients (1.6%); and Epstein-Barr virus-2 patients (0.8%). The log mean ages of presentation for the three predominant infections were: hepatitis A-18 years; hepatitis B-25 years; and non-A,
more » ... ears; and non-A, non-B hepatitis-30 years (F = 18.8, p = < 0.001). 52% of all cases were Malays (expected 32. 7%); 32% Chinese (expected 301 54.6%); and 16% Indians (expected 1l.5%) (X 2 = 53, p = < 0.001). Hepatitis A virus infection was more common amongst Malays whilst non-A, non-B. hepatitis lWS more frequent amongst Chinese and Indians. 28% of children « 16 years) and 50% of adults had serological markers of previous hepatitis B infection. The variation in frequency for the different forms of hepatitis amongst the three main ethnic groups would suggest that socioeconomic and/or cultural factors are important in the propagation of acute viral hepatitis in Malaysia. Hllsng-negative chronic liver disease in our community may be a product of the high incidence of non-A, non-B hepatitis.
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