Japanese health authorities have confirmed the country’s first death from unexplained acute hepatitis that has affected children in many countries around the world, public broadcaster NHK reported on Monday.
The National Institute of Infectious Diseases said one patient with the illness has died, but it did not disclose the time of death or the age of the victim, the report said.
The Japanese society for pediatric hepatology said it has set up a team of experts to determine what symptoms the deceased patient developed, and the cause of the case.
According to health ministry data, Japan had confirmed 162 cases of hepatitis of unknown origin as of March 17, and three of the patients had undergone liver transplants.
The patients are aged between 16 months and nine years and two months, and averaged four years and six months, the NHK said.
Many of the symptoms are digestive in nature, including fever, stomach pain, diarrhea and vomiting, it added.
Since April 2022, more than 1,000 cases of acute hepatitis of unknown cause have been reported in the world, mainly in Europe and the United States. Some patients have required liver transplants, and some have reportedly died, according to the NHK.