Acute viral hepatitis may be caused by a large variety of viruses. The most well known viral causes are hepatitis A, B, C, D, E, G viruses and Epstein-Barr virus.
The clinical manifestations of viral hepatitis are highly variable ranging from a mild asymptomatic presentation - usually - to fulminant, possibly fatal, hepatic failure.
If viral serology is negative, consider other causes of acute hepatitis, for example:
- alpha-1 anti-trypsin deficiency
- drug e.g. paracetamol poisoning, isoniazid, allopurinol, halothane, sulphonamides, methyldopa
- Wilson's disease
- Reye's syndrome in children
- Budd-Chiari syndrome
- poisons such as Amanita phalloides
Last reviewed 01/2018