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‘Suspect’ related to mysterious hepatitis is also the cause of pink eye

As of May 15, the world has recorded 450 cases of acute hepatitis of unknown cause in 21 countries, of which 12 patients died.

Several hypotheses have been put forward and scientists are focusing on clarifying, including the association of adenovirus, especially strain 41, with the onset of acute liver injury.

Adeno is not a new virus

The Adeno virus is not a new virus. Dr. Nguyen Pham Anh Hoa – Head of Hepatology Department, National Children’s Hospital – said that the evidence in antibody tests shows that most children have been infected with adeno virus at least once between 0 and 4 years old. .

According to doctors at 103 Hospital, the Adeno virus was first isolated in 1953 from the amygdala and glandular tissue removed after surgery.

To date, more than 100 strains are known, of which 47 are pathogenic in humans.

Out of a total of 47 human pathogens, one-third of the strains have been identified as the causative agents of human infections. Several strains have been shown to be carcinogenic in experimental animals.

Adeno virus can survive and cause disease for a long time in the outdoor environment. Specifically, this virus can survive at room temperature for 30 days; temperature 37 degrees Celsius for 15 days; 4 degrees Celsius for months and minus 20 degrees Celsius for years.

Boiling water at 100 degrees Celsius, ultraviolet light, and chloramine can easily destroy this virus, while organic solvents such as ether and acetone cannot kill the virus.

Adeno virus – the familiar culprit causing pink eye disease

According to Doctor Nguyen Trung Trung, Deputy Director of the Central Hospital for Tropical Diseases, the adenovirus spreads through the respiratory tract, mainly causing respiratory infections.

However, this virus can also cause disease in other organs such as the gastrointestinal tract, cystitis, meningitis, or conjunctivitis (causing pink eye).

The literature has also documented liver damage in immunocompromised patients infected with adenovirus.

“The previous cases of liver damage caused by the Adeno virus were extremely unique, the level of prevalence and severity like this cluster of cases is strange,” said Doctor Level.

Group B adenovirus, especially strains 3 and 7 have been identified as the common cause of pink eye.

In our country, this is a disease that often appears and easily causes epidemics in summer, hot weather or the time of season change. This virus is easily transmitted due to its alcohol resistance, remaining on the surfaces of household utensils and even medical tools for up to 35 days.

Pink eye disease is usually transmitted through direct contact with saliva, secretions from the patient’s eyes and nose or through personal belongings, contaminated handkerchiefs, contaminated water (especially water in pool)…

Dr. Hoang Cuong – Central Eye Hospital – said that the manifestations of adenovirus disease on the eyes are quite diverse, including: acute granulomatous conjunctivitis; epidemiological conjunctivitis; laryngitis – febrile conjunctivitis and chronic granulomatous conjunctivitis.

The initial symptoms of conjunctivitis caused by the Adeno virus are fever, fatigue, sore throat, and swollen lymph nodes in front of the ears. 5-7 days later, one eye is red, rusty, watery, burning. 3-5 days later, it will spread to the other eye.

Strains 40 and 41 of the Adeno virus commonly cause gastrointestinal disease. This is the second leading cause of gastrointestinal disease after rotavirus.

In young children, common digestive disorders caused by adenovirus include diarrhea, vomiting, and nausea.

The Ministry of Health on May 13 recommended immediate measures to prevent acute hepatitis of unknown cause, such as personal hygiene, border surveillance, testing for early detection of suspected cases…

Children with symptoms of fever, abdominal pain, vomiting, nausea, diarrhea, fatigue, jaundice, conjunctivitis… should be examined at medical facilities.

Clean hygiene is also a measure recommended by doctors to prevent pink eye disease or gastrointestinal disease caused by the Adeno virus.

Prevention should adhere to the following principles:

– Practice good personal hygiene, wear masks, wash hands often, especially before preparing food, before eating, after cleaning.

– Use clean food sources, ensure food hygiene and safety.

– Pay special attention to the prevention of diseases for children in schools and kindergartens by ensuring hygiene, using separate personal belongings (drinking cups, spoons, eating bowls, towels…).

– Clean and disinfect surfaces well.

– Proper waste disposal.

Thanh Hien

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