By Tamsin Brown • 23 April 2022 • 16:47
The Spanish Ministry of Health has confirmed eight cases of acute hepatitis of unknown origin, which has already affected a number of children in other countries.
Spain’s Ministry of Health has confirmed eight cases of the new acute hepatitis of unknown origin that is affecting children under 10 years of age, as well as another five suspected cases. The cases are concentrated in Madrid, Cataluña, Andalucia, Castile-La Mancha and Aragon, although, according to the Ministry of Health, they are not related to each other. All of the children are recovering favourably, except one of them, who needed a liver transplant.
According to a statement from the Coordination Centre for Health Alerts and Emergencies (CCAES), the cases were registered and reported following two alerts from the WHO and the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) regarding the United Kingdom, which has so far reported 108 infections.
Regarding the cases in Spain, one of them had previously travelled to the UK, and another also tested positive for adenoviruses, a common type of virus that could possibly be related. The patients are three boys and five girls between 18 months and 7 years old, according to the CCAES. The children began showing symptoms between January 2 and March 24 this year, including abdominal pain, vomiting and jaundice (yellowing of the skin).
The CCAES report states that one of the possible causes of the disease being investigated by the UK is an adenovirus infection, although other possible origins are also being studied, such as some types of coronavirus.
For the time being, the Ministry of Health is continuing to assess whether these cases “represent an unusual increase in cases of hepatitis of undetermined origin” compared to previous years.
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Originally from London, Tamsin is based in Malaga and is a local reporter for the Euro Weekly News covering Spanish and international news.
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