Factors Associated with Hepatitis C Infection among Chronic HCV Egyptian Patients

Ekram Abd El-Wahab, Ashraf Mikheal, Fathallah Sidkey, Hanan Shatat
2014 Iranian J Publ Health   unpublished
Identification of risk factors of acute hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection in Egypt is crucial for developing appropriate prevention strategies. There are few community-based studies on the epidemiology and risk factors of hepatitis C infection in Egypt, which could not provide enough information. Clear identification of past and current risk factors for infection is of utmost importance so that intervention programs can be appropriately focused. This study aims to provide up-to-date information
more » ... to-date information about changes in the incidence of individual risk factors for HCV infection transmission in Egypt. Methods: A total of 396 chronic HCV patients on follow-up treatment at liver center in El-Qabbary General Hospital in Alexandria were evaluated retrospectively regarding the potential iatrogenic, community acquired and behavioral HCV risk factors. Risk factors for HCV transmission were found in all study populations. Results: At least three identifiable risk factors were reported by each participant. Some behavioral and communityacquired exposures that entail several risky behaviors particularly, unsafe sexual practices were exclusively established among males. We report a significant decline in prevalence of HCV transmission through blood transfusion, parenteral treatment, hospitalization, surgery, non medicalized circumcision, Hijiama done by informal practitioner, tattooing, folk body piercing and threading, sharing hygiene and sharp items, and the use of communal barber or manicure sets among younger age cluster. Conclusion: The pattern of risk differed among older patients compared to younger age group suggesting improved medical care and infection control measures and raised public health awareness regarding the different modes of viral transmission.