Viral Hepatitis: Etiology, Epidemiology, Transmission, Diagnostics, Treatment, and Prevention

Infect Dis Clin North Am. 2019 Dec;33(4):1045-1062. doi: 10.1016/j.idc.2019.08.004.


Viral hepatitis is a major global public health problem affecting hundreds of millions of people and is associated with significant morbidity and mortality. Five major biologically unrelated hepatotropic viruses cause most of the global burden of viral hepatitis. Hepatitis B and hepatitis C are associated with a significant number of chronic infections. Most deaths from viral hepatitis are due to hepatitis B and hepatitis C. An estimated 257 million people were living with HBV and 71 million people were living with HCV. Most people are asymptomatic. New diagnostics and highly effective, pangenotypic direct-acting antivirals provide opportunities to cure and eradicate chronic hepatitis C virus infection.

Keywords: Acute viral hepatitis; Chronic viral hepatitis; HAV; HBV; HCV; HDV; HEV.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Global Health
  • Hepatitis Viruses / classification*
  • Hepatitis Viruses / pathogenicity
  • Hepatitis, Viral, Human / epidemiology*
  • Hepatitis, Viral, Human / prevention & control
  • Hepatitis, Viral, Human / therapy
  • Hepatitis, Viral, Human / virology*
  • Humans