Acute Viral Hepatitis Incidence Rate Decreasing Since 1990

The estimated annual percentage change was signficiantly associated with a baseline age-standardized incidence rate of less than 5500 per 100,000 individuals.

Trends for acute viral hepatitis (AVH) have generally decreased since 1990, according to new research.

A team, led by Guoqing Ouyang, Department of Hepatobiliary Surgery, Liuzhou People’s Hospital affiliated to Guangxi Medicine University, identified the cause-specific incidence and temporal trends of acute viral hepatitis.

AHV Trends

In the study, the investigators used data on acute viral hepatitis etiologies from the Global Burden of Disease study 2019 and estimated annual percentage changes to quantify temporal trends in age-standardized incidence rates by region, sex, and etiology.

Between 1990-2019, the global incidence of acute viral hepatitis increased by 8.02%. The overall incidence rose from 244,350,063 in 1990 to 263,951,645 in 2019 with an average decrease age-standardized incidence rate of 0.52% (95% CI, -0.58% to -0.45%) annually.

Age-Standardized Incidence Rates

The age-standardized incidence rate because of hepatitis B virus (HBV) also decreased, while hepatitis A (HAV), hepatitis C (HCV), and hepatitis E (HEV) remained stable, with estimated annual percentage change of -1.47 (95% CI, -1.58 to -1.36), 0 (95% CI, -0.09 to 0.09), -0.35 (95% CI, -0.83 to -0.13), and -0.16 (95% CI, -0.41 to 0.09), respectively.

While the number of new cases increased in the Low sociodemographic index (SDI) Low-middle SDI regions, the age-standardized incidence rates decreased in all 5 SDI regions.

They also found that HAV and HBV infections are the leading causes of acute hepatitis globally.

The estimated annual percentage change was signficiantly associated with a baseline age-standardized incidence rate of less than 5500 per 100,000 people (P = 0.44).

It was also associated with the 2019 human development index (HDI) (P = 0.16) for acute viral hepatitis.

“Although the ASIR of AVH showed a generally decreasing trend, the burden of AVH remains a major public health challenge globally. The findings may be helpful for policymakers in establishing appropriate policies to reduce the viral hepatitis burden,” the authors wrote.

Cirrhosis Trends

Recently, research shows exactly where cirrhosis is more prevalent around the world.

A team, led by Kailu Fang, State Key Laboratory for Diagnosis and Treatment of Infectious Diseases, National Clinical Research Center for Infectious Diseases, Collaborative Innovation Center for Diagnosis and Treatment of Infectious Diseases, The First Affiliated Hospital, College of Medicine, Zhejiang University, explored the time series associations between varying levels of risk factors and cirrhosis prevalence and predicted the cirrhosis prevalence under alternative scenarios to consolidate evidence for further intervention plans.

The highest global cirrhosis prevalence was found in the East and Southeast Asia, varying greatly geographically. This prevalence was mainly caused by high levels of hepatitis prevalence in those areas.

The investigators also found with each 1% increase in prevalence of hepatitis B and C, cirrhosis prevalence correspondingly increased 0.028% and 0.288%, respectively.

The study, “Incidence trends of acute viral hepatitis caused by four viral etiologies between 1990 and 2019 at the global, regional, and national levels,” was published online in Liver International.