The Increase of Hepatitis a Infections in Europe and Poland in 2017

Abstract: In December 2016, the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) published a report concerning increase in the number of hepatitis A cases in the United Kingdom and the Netherlands in 2016 caused by two new virus serotypes previously detected in patients in Berlin. Spain, Italy and Germany also reported a regional increase incidence of HAV at that time. In addition to the increase in the number of cases, there was a disproportion between the incidence of women and men and a high percentage of patients declaring homosexual orientation. Patients were not vaccinated against Hepatitis A in the vast majority of cases. In Poland, from 1st January 2017 to 12th October 2017, there have been 1680 cases of hepatitis A, while in 2016 there have been only 27 infected. The goal of the study is to analyze the causes of rapid increase of hepatitis A morbidity rate in Poland in 2017. Until now, the main route of hepatitis A virus transmission was the faecal – oral path caused by the consumption of contaminated food and lack of hygiene. Based on data from the Voivodeship Sanitary and Epidemiological Station in Poland and the report of the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), the number of cases of sexual contact increased. The current situation in Europe is correlated with epidemiological data in Poland – most of infected are young men. The increasing number of incidence of HAV infection among MSM (man who have sex with man) is a matter of concern due to the difficulties in interrupting the spreading of the epidemic and the prevention of secondary infections related to the participation of infected in the production and trade of food. The hepatitis A vaccine may be use for a prophylactic purpose, protective vaccinations for homosexual men are now particularly recommended. The information campaigns also play an important role in the prevention of the spread of hepatitis A infection. We can make a thesis based on information obtained. The deterioration of the epidemiological situation in Poland could be a consequence of the increase morbidity rate in the European Union countries.

Authors:
Paulina Rudzka, Malgorzata Nescior, Magdalena Tudrujek, Weronika Topyla, Krzysztof Tomasiewicz

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