Epidemiological and clinical features of a hepatitis A outbreak among adults in Albania

Abstract number: 1734_202

Harxhi A., Pano K., Kraja D., Bino S., Kakarriqi E., Ulqinaku D.

Objectives: To present the epidemiological and clinical features of acute hepatitis A outbreak among adults in a inner city in Albania.

Methods: During July and August 2006 an outbreak of acute hepatitis A occurred in the city of Tirana, Albania. Overall there were 420 cases of acute hepatitis A reported to Public Health Authorities in the city of Tirana. More than 65% of reported cases were above 15 years of age. 126 adult cases hospitalised and diagnosed with acute viral hepatitis A based on WHO case definition were included in the study.

Results: Around 90% of hospitalised cases (113) were between 15 to 25 years of age. There was an equal number of male and female cases. All the cases were inner city inhabitants, living in two to three close neighbourhoods. These young people belonged to families with a high socio0economic level. Epidemiological investigation revealed only drinking water as a common-source of the outbreak. Regarding clinical features, main prodromal symptoms included fatigue, malaise, anorexia, nausea and vomiting. Fever was present in 28% of the cases while arthralgias in 32% of the cases. Splenomegali was present in 42% of patients. Jaundice was not present in 6 cases (5%). Mean serum bilirubin level was 6 mg/dl, ranging from 0.3 to 19 mg/dl. Peak AST and ALT levels were 2500 and 3500 UI respectively. No fulminant form of acute hepatitis was observed. The serological diagnosis was based on the detection of IgM anti HAV in 49 cases (39%).

Conclusion: The pattern of this common-source water-associated outbreak indicates that Albania is still considered a country of moderate/intermediate endemicity of HAV infection.

Session Details

Date: 31/03/2007
Time: 00:00-00:00
Session name: European Society of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases
Location: ICC, Munich, Germany
Presentation type:
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