First human case of rat Hepatitis has been detected

PHOTO: MGN

The first human case of a type of Hepatitis E normally found in rats has been detected in a Hong Kong man.

Hepatitis E is a liver disease caused by a virus which is normally transmitted via the fecal-oral route according to the World Health Organization.

In this case, the South China Morning Post reports the 56-year-old man had displayed signs of Hepatitis E after having a liver transplant in May 2017. While doctors say the liver transplanted was fine, he developed liver failure symptoms and it was found he had a strain of Hepatitis E only found in rats and ferrets.

Researchers believe the man possibly consumed food or drink contaminated with rat droppings, though they have not identified exactly he was infected.

This is the first case of the disease jumping from rats to humans.

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