County’s Hepatitis A Outbreak Appears to Be Past Its Peak

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HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (AP) – A health department says a West Virginia county’s hepatitis A outbreak appears to be past its peak.

Dr. Michael Kilkenny with the Cabell-Huntington Health Department says it appears the epidemic’s peak happened in July and has been gradually reducing. He says the decline gives no indication of when the number of new hepatitis A cases will return to more typical levels and that secondary peaks are still possible.

The Herald-Dispatch reports the county has more than 200 confirmed cases, but didn’t have a diagnosed case in the past five years. Hepatitis A is a communicable disease of the liver caused by a virus.

Kilkenny says a decline in the county doesn’t indicate hepatitis A is declining across the region, as diseases tend to spike in different areas at different times.