Giorgio Calisti, Dianne N. Irish, Samreen Ijaz, Richard S. Tedder, Kevin Moore
Acute hepatitis E is becoming increasingly recognised in Europe with up to 40% of the population in Southern France being exposed to the virus, which is harboured in pigs. Patients with known liver disease may present with acute hepatitis E and present a diagnostic challenge. For example patients with autoimmune hepatitis (AIH) who are immunosuppressed and contract hepatitis E may be at increased risk of developing chronicity due to concurrent immunosuppression. Importantly, the diagnosis may be missed with the infection misdiagnosed as an autoimmune flare, and immunosuppression increased by the attending physician, thus enhancing the risk of chronicity of infection leading to progressive liver injury in immunocompromised patients. We report a case of acute hepatitis E in a patient with AIH and discuss the features that helped us differentiating it from an autoimmune flare.
Key words. Hepatitis E, HEV, Autoimmune hepatitis, AIH, Immunosuppression