Hepatitis A Outbreak Declared in Louisiana
Yesterday, the Louisiana Department of Health announced that they were investigating an outbreak of Hepatitis A virus after a startling number of cases were reported in several parishes across the state. The number of Hepatitis A cases this year (24) is triple the number reported at this time in 2017.
According to WAFB, the majority of cases are being reported in Morehouse Parish - but at least 10 other parishes from across the state are reporting infections from the virus. Officials have not yet identified a common path for this out break, but say that transmission of the disease seems to be through direct person-to-person spread and illicit drug use.
Hepatitis A is a highly contagious liver disease. Symptoms include vomiting, abdominal pain, diarrhea, loss of appetite and energy, yellowing of the skin, and pale-colored feces. Health officials are urging anyone who is at risk to get vaccinated as soon as possible.