Clinical characteristics and outcomes of acute hepatitis a in Korea: A nationwide multicenter study

So Young Kwon, Sang Hoon Park, Jong Eun Yeon, Sook Hyang Jeong, Oh Sang Kwon, Jin Woo Lee, Hong Soo Kim, Yeon Seok Seo, Young Seok Kim, Joo Hyun Sohn, Hyung Joon Yim, Jong Young Choi, Myung Seok Lee, Young Oh Kweon, Jae Youn Cheong, Haak Cheoul Kim, Heon Ju Lee, Soon Koo Baik, Hyonggin An, Kwan Soo Byun

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of this study was to investigate the clinical characteristics of acute hepatitis A during a recent outbreak in Korea. Data of patients diagnosed with acute hepatitis A from 2007 to 2009 were collected from 21 tertiary hospitals retrospectively. Their demographic, clinical, and serological characteristics and their clinical outcomes were analyzed. A total of 4,218 patients (mean age 33.3 yr) were included. The median duration of admission was 9 days. The mean of the highest ALT level was 2,963 IU/L, total bilirubin was 7.3 mg/dL, prothrombin time INR was 1.3. HBsAg was positive in 3.7%, and anti-HCV positive in 0.7%. Renal insufficiency occurred in 2.7%, hepatic failure in 0.9%, relapsing hepatitis in 0.7%, and cholestatic hepatitis in 1.9% of the patients. Nineteen patients (0.45%) died or were transplanted. Complications of renal failure or prolonged cholestasis were more frequent in patients older than 30 yr. In conclusion, most patients with acute hepatitis A recover uneventfully, however, complication rates are higher in patients older than 30 yr than younger patients. Preventive strategies including universal vaccination in infants and active immunization of hepatitis A to adult population should be considered for prevention of community-wide outbreaks of hepatitis A in Korea.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)248-253
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Korean medical science
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 The Korean Academy of Medical Sciences.


  • Hepatitis A
  • Morbidity
  • Mortality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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