The World Health Organization (WHO) says eight more countries have reported mysterious hepatitis cases in children in the past week.
This brought the total number of infected countries to 20. A total of 228 children worldwide have an unusual form of liver disease, and another 50 suspected cases are being investigated.
One death was confirmed, but four more were suspected and 18 children needed liver transplants.
Experts say the current figure could be the “tip of the iceberg” as many countries tighten controls on unusual complications.
Most cases have already been identified in Europe, but there are also in the United States, the Western Pacific, and Southeast Asia.
Researchers are amazed at the number of cases in which none of the infected children have been exposed to the viruses that cause normal hepatitis.
Adenoviruses are commonly blamed for causing colds and stomach upset, although they rarely cause inflammation of the liver.
There are fears that the blockade could weaken children’s immunity to common harmful viruses, and an investigation is under way into the presence of a mutated adenovirus or Covid.
But British scientists have acknowledged that it could take at least three months for health officials to know exactly what is behind such incidents.
The World Health Organization reported at least 228 children with hepatitis at the beginning of the month, and an additional 50 children are under investigation.
Experts say Covid blockades may be behind the mysterious prevalence of hepatitis in children, as they have reduced social interaction and weakened their immunity.
Q&A: What is the mysterious global hepatitis and what is behind it?
What is hepatitis?
Hepatitis is an inflammation of the liver, usually caused by a viral infection or liver damage from alcohol consumption.
Some cases resolve on their own, there are no problems, but some may be fatal, and these patients need a liver transplant to survive.
Why are experts worried?
Hepatitis is more common in children, but experts have found that the current epidemic is more frequent than expected a year later.
According to the World Health Organization, the origin of the disease is unknown and serious. It caused two deaths and 18 liver transplants.
What are the common cases?
Inflammation of the liver was observed in more than 200 children aged one month to 16 years.
less than five
* Cases in Canada, Japan and Illinois, Wisconsin and New York have not yet been confirmed.
What are the higher theories?
Experts say these cases may be related to the common cold-related adenovirus, but further research is ongoing.
This can be combined with Covid infection and lead to an increase in cases.
The WHO says at least 74 cases of adenovirus have been detected. At least 20 children have been diagnosed with the coronavirus.
British experts, who are tasked with investigating many diseases, believe that the endless cycle of blockades may have played a role.
Restrictions can weaken children’s immunity and increase their risk of contracting adenovirus due to reduced social interaction.
This means that even “normal” adenovirus can have serious consequences, because children do not respond to it as before.
Other scientists say the adenovirus may have “special mutations.”
This means it can be contagious or can improve children’s natural immunity.
New Covid option
UKHSA staff included a “new version of SARS-CoV-2” in the working hypotheses.
Covid rarely caused inflammation of the liver during a pandemic, but they were present in people of all ages, not children.
The UKHSA noted that environmental triggers are still being studied as possible causes of disease.
These may include contamination or exposure to certain drugs or toxins.
“As of May 1, at least 228 possible cases from 20 countries have been reported to the WTO, and more than 50 additional cases are under investigation,” WTO spokesman Tariq Jasarevic told reporters in Geneva today.
Most cases have been identified in the UK (145) and the US (20), which have the most powerful surveillance systems.
It has previously reported cases of “unknown” hepatitis in Ireland, Spain, France, Germany, Belgium, Italy and the Netherlands, as well as in Israel, Denmark, Norway and Romania.
In its first update on the spread of hepatitis since April 23, the WHO said the cases had spread to eight other countries.
The agency did not say in which countries additional cases were reported, but other health authorities have identified the disease in Austria, Germany, Poland, Japan and Canada, and Singapore is investigating a possible case in a 10-month-old baby.
Indonesia said yesterday that three children suspected of having hepatitis had died of unknown causes.
Of the 145 victims in the UK, mostly children under the age of five, first had diarrhea and dizziness, followed by jaundice – jaundice of the skin and whites of the eyes.
The WHO confirmed the death of one person, but did not disclose his whereabouts. One death in the United States is being investigated in Indonesia along with three others.
Health officials in the United Kingdom told MailOnline today that no deaths from hepatitis have been reported in Britain.
In Indonesia, two-, eight-, and 11-year-olds suffered from fever, jaundice, diarrhea, vomiting, diarrhea, and black urine.
The country’s health authorities suspect that these cases were caused by hepatitis, but tests are being carried out to determine if they have the usual hepatitis A viruses behind them or if their origin is unknown.
For the first time in the history of the World Health Organization, Scottish health officials identified 10 cases in children under 10 on April 5, the first in January.
This was more than the average seven to eight cases of hepatitis A to E recorded in Scotland in a year.
Dr. Mira Chand, director of clinical and new infections at UKHSA, said parents may be concerned, but their children’s chances of getting hepatitis are “very low.”
“However, we warn parents to be careful of the symptoms of hepatitis, especially jaundice, which is easily noticed as a white-yellow tone of the eyes, and if you are concerned, consult a doctor,” he said.
Dr. Chand added, “Regular hygiene measures, including thorough hand washing and proper hand washing in children, can help reduce the spread of many common infections.
“As always, children who notice symptoms such as vomiting and diarrhea should stay home and not return to school or kindergarten until 48 hours after the symptoms have stopped.”
Hepatitis is usually rare in children, but experts have found more cases in the UK since January than they expected a year later.
Scientists have previously speculated that the cases may be the “tip of the iceberg,” but there may be more than previously observed.
Professor Alastair Satcliffe, a leading pediatrician at University College London, told MailOnline health officials may not know the cause until the end of this summer.
He said: “With modern methods, computer science, advanced computing, real-time PCR and whole-genomic screening, I think it will take three months to find the cause with some reasonable reliability.”
According to Professor Satcliffe, the discovery could be slowed down by bureaucratic means at international borders, such as difficulties in transporting biomaterials across countries.
Parental consent, data protection and laws regulating the use of human tissue in the UK could all slow down research, he said.
It is especially difficult to look for unknown causes, as there may be several factors behind the disease that do not apply to all diseases.
Health officials in the UK have ruled out the Covid vaccine as a possible cause, as none of the sick British children have been vaccinated due to their age.
A spokesman for the European Center for Disease Control and Prevention (ECDC) said the disease was “very rare” but that the risk to children was “high” due to its potential impact.
It is not possible to accurately assess the risk for European children because the evidence of infection among humans is inaccurate and cases in the EU have “an incomprehensible trend”.
However, given the unknown causes of the disease and the potential severity of the disease that occurred, the ECDC said the epidemic was “an event that has raised concerns for public health”.