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De Novo Acute Infection And Reactivation Of Hepatitis B Virus In Established Cirrhosis

A. Theodossi, S. P. W. Wilkinson, B. Portmann, Y. White, A. L. W. F. Eddleston, Roger Williams and A. J. Zuckerman
The British Medical Journal
Vol. 2, No. 6195 (Oct. 13, 1979), pp. 893-895
Published by: BMJ
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/25437259
Page Count: 3
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De Novo Acute Infection And Reactivation Of Hepatitis B Virus In Established Cirrhosis
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Abstract

Five patients with cirrhosis proved by biopsy had clinical, biochemical, and serological evidence of an acute hepatitis B infection. In two the illness was fulminant and led to death. Only one patient completely recovered. Serological markers for the hepatitis B virus were absent before the onset of the acute illness in four patients, which suggested that a de novo infection had been acquired as a result of recent transfusions of blood or blood products. The fifth patient, who had Goodpasture's syndrome, had antibody to the core of hepatitis B virus, indicating previous exposure to the virus; his acute hepatitis may have been related to immunosuppressive drug treatment, which may have reactivated a dormant virus infection. Thus an acute type B viral hepatitis due to either a de novo or a reactivated infection may be superimposed on cirrhosis.

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