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July 23, 1982

A new view on one form of chronic hepatitis

JAMA. 1982;248(4):410-411. doi:10.1001/jama.1982.03330040010008

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Researchers at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), have gathered evidence that challenges established views on the severity, etiology, and treatment of chronic active hepatitis (the more aggressive form of chronic hepatitis, as contrasted with chronic persistent hepatitis).

Using computerized data from dozens of San Francisco Bay area physicians, a team led by gastroenterologist David Altman, MD, found that patients with chronic active hepatitis in the Bay Area are not as ill as those usually described. The team also identified far more cases that were apparently caused by hepatitis B viral infection than the literature would indicate. These findings may signal the need to reevaluate the standard treatments for chronic active hepatitis. Altman's team reported its findings at the recent meeting of the Association of American Physicians in Washington, DC.

Striking more than 2,000 Americans each year, chronic active hepatitis can lead to the formation of fibrosis in the