LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — The Southern Nevada Health District is reporting five additional probable cases linked to its investigation of acute non-viral hepatitis illness in Clark County residents and the death of one person who was identified as a probable case. The patient who died was a woman in her 60s with underlying medical conditions and is one of the five new probable cases reported. This brings the total to 16 probable and one suspect case.
In March, the Southern Nevada Health District announced it was working with its federal partners to investigate reports of acute non-viral hepatitis in Clark County. The Health District initially received reports of five cases of severe acute non-viral hepatitis in children between November 23, 2020, and December 3, 2020. The additional probable cases are all adults. The 15 people identified as probable cases who have recovered were hospitalized and have since been released. None of the children or adults required a transplant. The one suspect case meets the clinical criteria but has not been tested for viral hepatitis. This individual was also hospitalized and has recovered.
To date, the consumption of “Real Water” brand alkaline water was found to be the only common exposure associated with all the identified cases. The FDA is conducting further testing and an investigation into the facility, and the Health District continues to enhance surveillance to detect additional cases of acute non-viral hepatitis. Additional reports currently being investigated by the Health District include but are not limited to people who self-identified to the Health District, were reported by a health care provider, or because their Real Water subscription was canceled due to health concerns.
The ages of the children identified during the initial investigation range from 7 months to 5 years. The ages of the adult cases range from 32 to 71 years of age. The most common symptoms reported by the patients included nausea, vomiting, fatigue, loss of appetite, and dizziness.
The FDA has recommended that consumers, restaurants, and retailers discontinue drinking, cooking with, selling, or serving “Real Water” alkaline water. More information on the investigation is available on the FDA’s website.
Acute non-viral hepatitis is an inflammation of the liver that can be caused by exposure to toxins, autoimmune disease, or drinking too much alcohol. Though hepatitis can have many causes, symptoms often include fever, fatigue, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, dark urine, light-colored stools, joint pain, and yellow skin or eyes. Anyone who is experiencing these symptoms should contact their health care provider.