Acute sporadic hepatitis E in Sudanese children: analysis based on a new western blot assay

J Infect Dis. 1992 Jun;165(6):1001-5. doi: 10.1093/infdis/165.6.1001.


A newly developed Western blot assay for antibody to hepatitis E virus (anti-HEV) was used to evaluate 39 cases of acute pediatric hepatitis and 39 control patients in Khartoum, Sudan. The mean age of cases was 6.5 years (range, 2-14); 64% were male. Acute hepatitis A (IgM anti-HAV-positive) was diagnosed in 13 cases, acute hepatitis B (IgM anti-HBc-positive) in 1, and acute hepatitis E (positive for IgM anti-HEV) in 23 (59%). None of the cases with IgM anti-HAV or IgM anti-HBc had IgM anti-HEV; 3 controls had IgM anti-HEV. Acute hepatitis E was associated with recent contact with a family member or acquaintance with jaundice and the presence of indoor plumbing. The newly developed hepatitis E assay appeared to be specific for the diagnosis of acute icteric non-A, non-B hepatitis. Hepatitis E was found to be the most common cause of acute sporadic hepatitis in children living in an urban area of Africa.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Acute Disease
  • Adolescent
  • Age Factors
  • Blotting, Western*
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Female
  • Hepatitis A / diagnosis
  • Hepatitis A / epidemiology
  • Hepatitis Antibodies / blood*
  • Hepatitis B / diagnosis
  • Hepatitis B / epidemiology
  • Hepatitis E / diagnosis
  • Hepatitis E / epidemiology*
  • Hepatitis E virus / immunology*
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulin G / blood
  • Immunoglobulin M / blood
  • Infant
  • Liver Function Tests
  • Male
  • Sudan / epidemiology
  • Urban Population


  • Hepatitis Antibodies
  • Immunoglobulin G
  • Immunoglobulin M