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Autoimmune Hepatitis: It''s Closer Than You Think

Autoimmune hepatitis (AIH) is an autoimmunity disease, which is usually found in women. Among white Northern Europeans, the mean annual incidence of is 1.9 per 100,000, and its point prevalence is 16.9 per 100,000.[1] The prevalence is even higher in the Asian pacific region, which is 4~24.5 per 100,000.[2] Consider the annual incidence rate growth higher each year, it is obvious that autoimmune hepatitis is closer to us than we think. AIH can occur in children and adults of all ages and it is usually due to unknown causes. Appropriate diagnostic method and treatments management can prolong survival, improve quality life.

AIH and viral hepatitis have similar symptoms, includes fatigue, abdominal discomfort, an enlarged liver etc. These symptoms are nonspecific, and unable to perform accurate diagnosis. The mortality rate in untreated autoimmune hepatitis is as high as 80%.[3] Furthermore, untreated autoimmune hepatitis can cause cirrhosis, which leads to complications as enlarged veins in esophagus, liver failure and even liver cancer.[4] 

Therefore, serological identification is necessary to differentiate between AIH and viral hepatitis and address right treatments respectively. For example, SLA/LP is most specific autoantibody detected only in AIH other than viral hepatitis. However, SLA/LP shows extremely high specificity in identify AIH, yet it is limited in sensitivity. This is why the diagnosis needs to combine other parameters including ANA, SMA, LKM-1, LC1 to increase serological hit rate, which will give out a more reliable result.[5]

This July 28, on the world Hepatitis Day, YHLO encourages people to raise awareness of Hepatitis diseases. With a comprehensive Hepatitis diagnostic panel, YHLO is aim to provide an easy and intelligent diagnostic method to reduce the death from hepatitis worldwide.

Copple, S., Jaskowski, T., Giles, R. and Hill, H. (2019). Interpretation of ANA Indirect Immunofluorescence Test Outside the Darkroom Using NOVA View Compared to Manual Microscopy.
Wang, Q., Yan,  L. and Ma, X. (2017). Autoimmune Hepatitis in the Asia-Pacific Area. Journal  of Clinical and Translational Hepatology, 6(1), pp.1-9.
Soloway, R., Summerskill, W., Baggenstoss, A., Geall, M., Gitnick, G., Elveback, L. and Schoenfield, L. (1972). Clinical, Biochemical, and Histological Remission of Severe Chronic Active Liver Disease: A Controlled Study of Treatments and Early Prognosis. Gastroenterology, 63(5), pp.820-833.
Liberal, R. and Grant, C. (2016). Cirrhosis and autoimmune liver disease: Current understanding. World Journal of Hepatology, 8(28), p.1157.
Fujiwara, K., Yasui, S., Tawada, A., Fukuda, Y., Nakano, M. and Yokosuka, O. (2011). Diagnostic value and utility of the simplified International Autoimmune Hepatitis Group criteria in acute-onset autoimmune hepatitis. Liver International, 31(7), pp.1013-1020.

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