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Madhuri Chandnani, Mandeep Kaur, Anusha Ramadhas, Taisiya Tumarinson
(Department of Internal Medicine, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Queens Hospital Center, Jamaica, NY, USA)
Am J Case Rep 2016; 17:584-586
Hepatitis E virus (HEV) is the most common cause of enterically acquired acute viral hepatitis worldwide with major prevalence in the developing countries. An increasing number of sporadic cases of acute HEV infection have also been found in developed countries, but there is still no role for HEV testing in cases of seronegative acute hepatitis in such nonendemic regions.
CASE REPORT: A 59-year-old male residing in the United States for seven months with a history of malaria treated one year ago presented with fatigue and cholestatic jaundice with very high bilirubin levels. Hepatitis A, B, and C viral serology along with other atypical infections were ruled out. No history of any kind of drug intake was reported. Liver biopsy was obtained and was suggestive of acute hepatitis. Eventually hepatitis E immunoglobulin M was checked and was found positive. The patient was treated with supportive care and improved gradually with normalization of liver function test in a few weeks.
CONCLUSIONS: Autochthonous HEV infection must be suspected in cases of acute viral hepatitis in developed countries. Timely detection of HEV infection is necessary, especially in immunocompromised patients, in whom treatment is required to eradicate the infection.