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Inclusion Body Hepatitis

Inclusion Body Hepatitis (IBH) is an acute liver disease of chickens caused by different fowl aviadenovirus (FAdV) serotypes. 43 different FAdV strains were isolated in China from 2007 to 2014 in poultry and ostriches with IBH and hydropericardium syndrome (HPS). IBH was first described in the United States in 1963. Since then, the disease has spread to other countries worldwide. Outbreaks have been reported in broilers and broiler breeder flocks worldwide in commercial broiler and broiler breeder flocks. In a 4-year study period, IBH infections were the most prevalent disease in broiler flocks.


FAdV can be transmitted to chickens both vertically and horizontally, however vertical transmission is of most importance as it is associated with infected breeder chickens passing the virus down to their offspring after hatching.

Clinical Signs

Ruffled feathers
Weight loss
Watery droppings


  • History
  • Clinical signs
  • Virus isolation
  • Polymerase chain reaction (PCR)
  • Serology
  • Necropsy - Examination of liver samples


Supportive care: Isolate the bird from the flock and place in a safe, comfortable, warm location (your own chicken "intensive care unit") with easy access to water and food. Limit stress. Call your veterinarian.



Biosecurity protection measures

Scientific References

Age Range

Most often occurs in meat-type chickens between 3-7 weeks of age.