The World Health Organization (WHO) has announced that there has been an Extraordinary Event (KLB) in the form of acute hepatitis cases that have attacked children in Europe, America and Asia since April 15, 2022.
Then in the last two weeks until April 31, 2022, the Ministry of Health (Kemenkes) noted that there were 3 pediatric patients being treated at Dr. RSUPN. Cipto Mangunkusumo, Jakarta, died with suspected acute hepatitis whose cause is unknown.
“These three patients are referrals from hospitals in East Jakarta and West Jakarta,” the Ministry of Health reported in a press release, Sunday (1/5/2022).
“The symptoms found in these patients are nausea, vomiting, severe diarrhea, fever, jaundice, seizures and decreased consciousness,” he continued.
The Ministry of Health is trying to investigate the cause of this acute hepatitis event through a complete virus panel examination. The DKI Jakarta Provincial Health Office is also conducting further epidemiological investigations.
“During the investigation period, we urge the public to be careful and remain calm. Take precautions such as washing hands, making sure food is cooked and clean, not changing eating utensils, avoiding contact with sick people, and continuing to implement health protocols,” he said. Spokesperson for the Ministry of Health, Dr. Siti Nadia Tarmizi in a press statement, Sunday (1/5/2022).
“If children have jaundice, abdominal pain, sudden vomiting and diarrhea, old tea-colored urine, pale stools, seizures, decreased consciousness, they should immediately check with the nearest health service facility,” said dr. Nadia.
Cases Already Found in 12 Countries
According to the WHO report, currently there have been more than 170 cases of acute hepatitis in children, which were reported in more than 12 countries.
WHO first received this case report on 5 April 2022 from Central Scotland, United Kingdom, regarding 10 cases of Acute Hepatitis of Unknown Etiology (Acute Hepatitis of Unknown Aetiology) in children aged 11 months-5 years during the January-March 2022 period.
Later reports emerged that this case also occurred in children in the age range of 1 month to 16 years. Seventeen of them (10%) required liver transplantation, and 1 case was reported to have died.
Clinical symptoms in the identified cases were acute hepatitis with elevated liver enzymes, acute jaundice (jaundice) syndrome, and gastrointestinal symptoms (abdominal pain, diarrhea and vomiting). In most cases, there are no symptoms of fever.
The cause of the disease is still unknown. Laboratory tests abroad have been carried out, and hepatitis A, B, C, D and E viruses were not found to be the cause of the disease.
Adenovirus was detected in 74 cases abroad, which after molecular tests were identified as F type 41. SARS-CoV-2 was found in 20 cases, while 19 cases detected co-infection with SARS-CoV-2 and adenovirus.
The Ministry of Health through the Director General of Disease Prevention and Control has issued a Circular Letter Number HK.02.02/C/2515/2022 concerning Precautions for the Discovery of Cases of Acute Hepatitis with No Known Etiology (Acute Hepatitis Of Unknown Aetiology) dated April 27, 2022.
The Circular is intended to increase the support of the Regional Government, health service facilities, the Port Health Office, health human resources (HR), and stakeholders related to early vigilance of the discovery of cases of Acute Hepatitis of Unknown Etiology.
The Ministry of Health also asks related parties to inform the public to immediately visit the nearest Health Service Facility (Fasyankes) if they experience Yellow Disease syndrome, as well as build and strengthen surveillance networks across programs and across sectors.
“Of course we are strengthening surveillance through cross-programs and cross-sectors, so that immediate action can be taken if cases of acute jaundice syndrome are found or those with symptoms such as hepatitis symptoms,” explained dr. Nadia.