Dogs or paracetamol may have triggered bizarre hepatitis outbreak in children, experts say

Hepatitis: Dr Hilary Jones outlines the main symptoms

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Medics are still scratching their heads to find out what exactly has lead to the surge in hepatitis cases in the UK. The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) reported 163 youngsters have now contracted the virus. Of those 163 children, 11 have needed a liver transplant because of the infection. During the ongoing investigation into the steep rise in cases, the illness seems to be more prevalent in households where dogs reside.

In 92 cases investigated across the UK thus far, 64 positives were in children who had been exposed to canines, data from the UKHSA indicated.

The children were either from a dog owning family or they were exposed to dogs elsewhere.

While medical professionals are exploring the association further, it is known that are there is a high level of dog ownership in the UK.

Due to this, the finding could be completely unrelated, meaning dogs can not be attributed to the sudden outbreak of hepatitis in children.

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The link, however, is still under investigation; paracetamol is also under the microscope.

Families who had been affected by the sudden outbreak of hepatitis had been included in the research.

And three quarters of the respondents mentioned that they had recently used paracetamol before the infection occured.

Fewer reported ibuprofen use and none reported aspirin use, hence why paracetamol could be linked to the increase in hepatitis cases.

More information to follow… 

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