<virology> A form of viral hepatitis, known as infectious hepatitis, due to its ability to be spread through personal contact with oral secretions or stool. Virus will be shed in the stools of an infected individual 2-3 weeks prior to the onset of any symptoms. Hepatitis A may also be transmitted sexually. Symptoms are similar to those of influenza, but the skin and eyes may become yellow. Recent travel to a third world country is a risk factor. There is no specific treatment but infected individuals should avoid potentially hepatotoxic substances.

The virus is a small (27nm diameter) single stranded RNA virus with some resemblance to enteroviruses such as polio.

(27 Sep 1997)

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