Title

The relationship between therapeutic injections and high prevalence of hepatitis C infection in Hafizabad, Pakistan

Document Type

Article

Department

Community Health Sciences

Abstract

To determine the prevalence and routes of transmission of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection in Hafizabad, Pakistan, we collected sera in 1993 from a geographically based random sample of residents, and in 1994 identified 15 HCV-infected individuals (cases) and 67 age and sex matched uninfected individuals (controls). Initially we approached 504 households, and collected serum from a randomly selected household member in 309 (64%). Twenty persons (6.5%) had anti-HCV antibody; 31% percent had hepatitis B core antibodies, and 4.3% had hepatitis B surface antigen. In the case-control study, persons who received more therapeutic injections (categorized as averaging 1, 2-4, 5-9 or > 10 injections per year in the previous 10 years) were more likely to be infected with HCV (odds ratio 0, 1.5, 2.5 and 6.9 respectively, P = 0.008) compared to persons averaging 0 injections per year. Efforts to limit therapeutic injections to only those that are medically indicated and that use sterile equipment are essential in order to prevent transmission of HCV.

Publication

Epidemiology and Infection

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