Presentation and Outcomes of Autoimmune Hepatitis Type 1 and Type 2 in Children: A Single-center Study

J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2021 Jan 1;72(1):101-107. doi: 10.1097/MPG.0000000000002892.


Objective: Autoimmune hepatitis (AIH) is designated as type 1 or 2 (AIH-1/2) on the basis of serum autoantibody (Ab) profiles. In children, AIH may present as acute or chronic liver failure or cirrhotic AIH (ALF/CLF/CAIH) with or without overlap sclerosing cholangitis (SC). The aim of this study was to compare demographics, presentation, and outcomes between groups in children.

Methods: A retrospective electronic chart review of children with AIH who met standard diagnostic criteria with histologic confirmation at Texas Children's Hospital was performed, with de novo AIH after liver transplant (LT) excluded. Patients were identified and divided into AIH-1, AIH-2, ALF, CAIH, AIH-SC, and LT and compared using chi-square analysis, Student t-test, and Mood median test.

Results: Among 91 children with AIH, 72 (79.1%) had AIH-1, 19 (20.9%) had AIH-2, 13 (14.3%) had ALF, 25 (27.5%) had CAIH, and 14 (15.4%) had AIH-SC. Both AIH-1/2 had female and Hispanic predominance (72.2/89.5%, 40.3/57.9%). AIH-2 presented at younger mean age in years than AIH-1 (6.8, 12.1, P < 0.05). Both AIH-1/2 had low rates of remission after 1 year of IS (25.4, 35.7%) and most recent (30.6, 54.5%) follow-up. Twenty-two (24.2) patients received LT: 16 had AIH-1 (72.7%), 6 had AIH-2 (27.3%), 9 (40.9%) had ALF, and 13 (59.1%) had CAIH. One-year patient and graft survivals were 100%.

Conclusions: The epidemiology and clinical presentation of AIH-1 and -2 had a few subtle differences. AIH-1 was associated with more complications after LT. More data are needed to better characterize the 2 as separate disease entities.

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Cholangitis, Sclerosing*
  • Female
  • Hepatitis, Autoimmune* / diagnosis
  • Hepatitis, Autoimmune* / epidemiology
  • Humans
  • Liver Transplantation*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Texas / epidemiology