• viral hepatitis;
  • acute hepatitis non-A;
  • non-B: light microscopy

ABSTRACT— Coded examination of liver biopsies from a total of 24 patients with acute hepatitis non-A, non-B revealed two main histological trends: (a) acute viral hepatitis with confluent necrosis (sublobular and bridging) carrying a relatively good prognosis and taking a chronic course in only four out of 14 patients (29%); and (b) acute viral hepatitis with severe portal infiltration rich in lymphocytes and plasma cells, lymph follicles with germinal centers and bile duct lesions, as described by Poulsen & Christoffersen. The latter group showed a very high tendency to transition to chronic hepatitis (six out of seven patients, 86%) or a course characterized by one or multiple acute relapses (one out of seven patients, 14%). Bile duct lesions, if present in biopsies of patients with acute hepatitis, are of diagnostic and prognostic value. They point to the etiological possibility of a hepatitis non-A, non-B and, at the same time, they indicate a high likelihood of evolution to chronic liver disease.