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The prevalence of hepatitis B and C infections among immigrants to a newly reclaimed area endemic for Schistosoma mansoni in Sinai, Egypt.

Authors
Type
Published Article
Journal
Acta Tropica
0001-706X
Publisher
Elsevier
Publication Date
Volume
68
Issue
2
Pages
229–237
Identifiers
PMID: 9386797
Source
Medline
Keywords
License
Unknown

Abstract

In Egypt, infection with hepatitis B (HBV) and C (HCV), together with schistosomiasis are major causes of chronic liver disease. Findings are presented from a study conducted in January 1994 to determine the prevalence of HBV and HCV infections in a Schistosoma mansoni-endemic area east of the Bitter Lakes recently reclaimed from the desert for agriculture. Serology for hepatitis B and C markers was performed on a community-based random sample of 506 area residents of mean age 20 years, and 52% male. The seroprevalences of hepatitis infection were 19.6% for HBV, 10.3% for HCV, and 5% both HBV and HCV. The prevalence of HBV and HCV markers generally increased with age. No association, however, was found with either sex, S. mansoni infection, or schistosomal periportal fibrosis. HBV seropositivity was not associated with increased risk of HCV seropositivity. Anti-HCV seropositivity was significantly associated with previous parenteral treatment for schistosomiasis and history of previous surgery. HBV and HCV infection is a major problem in this population. The Egyptian program of infant hepatitis B vaccination should be consolidated and extended to older children and high-risk adult groups. There is also an urgent need to study more closely the epidemiology, natural history, risk factors, and modes of hepatitis C transmission.

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