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Article
January 1952

ENDEMIC INFECTIOUS HEPATITIS IN AN INFANTS' ORPHANAGE: I. Epidemiologic Studies in Student Nurses

Author Affiliations

CHICAGO; PHILADELPHIA

From the Department of Medicine, Northwestern University Medical School, and the Liver Research Laboratory of St. Luke's Hospital (Dr. Capps and Dr. Bennett), and from the Department of Pediatrics, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (Dr. Stokes).

AMA Arch Intern Med. 1952;89(1):6-23. doi:10.1001/archinte.1952.00240010016002
Abstract

ALTHOUGH the clinical and pathologic aspects of the infectious (epidemic) type of viral hepatitis are now relatively well understood, the epidemiology of the disease is still not entirely clear. Studies in this field have been seriously handicapped by the lack of a susceptible laboratory animal. Since it has been necessary to employ volunteers, experimental observations have been limited. It is agreed that the etiological agent of infectious (epidemic) hepatitis is a filtrable virus which can be demonstrated in both the blood and the feces.1 Not only has the disease been experimentally transmitted by the parenteral injection of infected blood or serum and by the oral ingestion of infected feces but epidemics have been described as presumably due to these mechanisms. Thus, accidental parenteral transmission has been reported as occurring in a variety of ways.2 Like-wise, there are several reports of epidemics due to contaminated water,3 milk,4 and food.5

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