Histologic examination of the liver in viral hepatitis concerns two main aspects: (1) the morphologic findings during the course of the disease and their prognostic value in severe jaundice; and (2) study of protracted forms ranging from simple persistent viral hepatitis to cirrhosis. Improved epidemiologic knowledge, the discovery of the Australia antigen (HAA) and, more recently, of epidemic-hepatitis-associated antigen (EHAA) by Costantino et al1 has provided a more precise etiological basis for study of the lesions. The results presented here concern the histological study of two homogeneous groups of patients: one of 28 patients with severe jaundice observed by Caroli and ourselves during an epidemic and another of 50 patients, with epidemic or serum hepatitis of variable duration, in a military hospital.
They represent 1% to 2% in most epidemics. Among 700 soldiers, most of them young adults, no deaths occurred. The classification into three main groups