NGO concerned about mysterious liver disease in children

A NON-GOVERNMENTAL organization has expressed concern about reported incidences of a mysterious liver disease that has affected children in Europe, the United States and Indonesia.

Childhope Philippines said the incidence of liver disease was widespread in countries where they claimed the pandemic was over, such as the UK and the US, and where there had been a resurgence in cases due to the variants. Omicron recombinants.

He cited reports from USA Today and the Washington Post, which noted that the World Health Organization had been “alarmed” after a child died of said liver disease and 169 cases had been reported. in a dozen countries.

The report also says the first cases were reported in the UK, where 114 children were affected by the disease.

The WHO said the cases may have been linked to a virus commonly associated with the common cold, but added that it had not yet investigated the cause. Twenty of the children who had the liver disease had tested positive for coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).

Childhope also cited a CBS News report, where three children in Indonesia died in hospitals from liver disease.

He reported that the children had symptoms including nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and abdominal pain, as well as fever, jaundice, seizures and loss of consciousness.

Elizabeth Whittaker, a pediatric infectious disease specialist at the University of London, said the cases were “extremely unusual” as the cases came from healthy children under the age of 5.

She added that most of the evidence points to two suspects such as adenovirus, which is a common family of viruses, and the Covid-19 virus.

Dr Jaime Galvez-Tan, president of Childhope Philippines, said he was “concerned” about cases of mysterious outbreaks of hepatitis in the United States, Europe and Indonesia, where some children have also tested positive for Covid- 19.

He urged children to stay away from crowded places even though there is no confirmation yet if these conditions are related.

“Nevertheless, we advise children to stay away from crowds. Parents should take children to hospital immediately if they suffer from nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or abdominal pain,” added Galvez- Tan.

In a separate briefing. Dr Benito Atienza, pediatrician and president of the Philippine Medical Association, said vaccinating children with the hepatitis B vaccine is important to prevent the prevalence of liver disease as well as liver cancer 30 years later. have been infected with hepatitis.

“Hepatitis B [vaccine] ay pagkapanganak, after one month in saka after six months ay ibinibigay, napakahalaga po nito, para maiwasan natin ang (Hepatitis B vaccine should be administered after birth, after one month and after six months, so that the child can prevent) liver cancer later in life,” Atienza added.

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