NOTE: A surveillance case definition is a set of uniform criteria used to define a disease for public health surveillance. Surveillance case definitions enable public health officials to classify and count cases consistently across reporting jurisdictions. Surveillance case definitions are not intended to be used by healthcare providers for making a clinical diagnosis or determining how to meet an individual patient’s health needs.

CSTE Position Statement(s)

  • 10-ID-11

Clinical Description

An acute illness with a) discrete onset of symptoms and b) jaundice or serum aminotransferase levels (ALT) >200 IU/L

Laboratory Criteria For Diagnosis

  • Immunoglobulin M (IgM) antibody to hepatitis B core antigen (anti-HBc) positive, OR
  • Hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) positive

AND IgM anti-HAV negative (if done)

Case Classification


A case that meets the clinical case definition, is laboratory confirmed, and is not known to have chronic hepatitis B.

Related Case Definition(s)

Page last reviewed: April 16, 2021