- hepatitis A
- hepatitis A -'ā n an acute usu. benign hepatitis caused by a single-stranded RNA virus of the family Picornaviridae (species Hepatitis A virus of the genus Hepatovirus) that does not persist in the blood serum and is transmitted esp. in food and water contaminated with infected fecal matter called also infectious hepatitis see havrix
* * *a usually self-limited viral disease of worldwide distribution caused by the hepatitis A virus, more prevalent in areas of poor hygiene and low socioeconomic standards. It is transmitted almost exclusively by the fecal-oral route, although parenteral transmission is possible; there is no carrier state. The incubation period is about 30 days, with a range of 15 to 50 days. Most cases are clinically inapparent or have mild flulike symptoms; jaundice, if present, is usually mild. Massive hepatic necrosis (fulminant hepatitis) does occur, but much less commonly than with hepatitis B or C. Formerly called epidemic or infectious h.
Medical dictionary. 2011.