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Hepatitis A

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An acute form of hepatitis that is caused by Hepatitis A virus (HAV), which is transmitted by the fecal-oral route


The inflammation of the liver is called hepatitis. There are many causes of hepatitis and one of them is viral infection. There are five major viruses that are of medical concern: hepatitis A, hepatitis B, hepatitis C, hepatitis D, and hepatitis E.

Hepatitis A is a viral hepatitis. It is caused by the Hepatitis A virus (HAV), which is a picornavirus. The mode of transmission is by ingestion of food and water contaminated with the virus. It may also be spread through close contact with an infectious person. Compared with the other four viral types, this virus has a relatively shorter incubation period, i.e. 15-45 days. The disease may persist for more than two or three months. However, there is a possibility of experiencing continuous or relapsing symptoms from six months to a year after the initial diagnosis. Histological examination reveals necrosis of the periportal hepatocytes. Nevertheless, the disease rarely leads to acute live failure. There is also infiltration of lymphocytic and plasma cell.

A vaccine to prevent HAV infection can provide protection against the disease for up to ten years.

Abbreviation / Acronym:

  • HA


  • virus A hepatitis
  • viral hepatitis type A


  • acute infective hepatitis
  • epidemic hepatitis
  • infectious hepatitis
  • MS-1 hepatitis
  • short incubation hepatitis

See also: