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5 Kentucky counties report mysterious cases of hepatitis in children

5 Kentucky counties report mysterious cases of hepatitis in children
Published: Jun. 9, 2022 at 6:06 AM EDT
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - The Department of Public Health confirms six cases of a mysterious form of hepatitis in children in Kentucky.

A spokesperson says there is at least one case in Todd, Lyon, Meade and Bourbon counties. Jefferson County has two possible cases.

Hepatitis is inflammation of the liver. Symptoms include high fevers, fatigue, yellowing skin, loss of appetite, abdominal pain and vomiting.

Hepatitis is generally not seen in kids.

“The majority of the cases look to be that, across the world, related to a virus called adenovirus, but we see an adenovirus every year so we don’t usually see hepatitis,” said pediatrician Dr. Katrina Hood. “So, there’s some odd strain there’s probably leading to that but not all of the kids are positive for that either. So, there probably is something else.”

According to the World Health Organization, there have been 650 probable cases worldwide involving young children between April 5 and May 26.

At least 38 of those children needed liver transplants. Nine of them died.

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