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Prevalence of hepatitis B, hepatitis C and human immunodeficiency viruses, and evaluation of risk factors for transmission: Report of a population screening in Nigeria

U C Okonkwo, H Okpara, A Otu, S Ameh, Y Ogarekpe, H Osim, M Inyama

Abstract


Background. Hepatitis B virus (HBV), hepatitis C virus (HCV) and HIV are common blood-borne infections unevenly distributed across regions in Nigeria. Few population-based prevalence studies have been done in Nigeria.

Objective. To determine the prevalence of HBV, HCV and HIV and risk factors for infection with these viruses in a Nigerian population.

Methods. Hepatitis B surface antigen, anti-HCV and HIV were assayed in 1 498 healthy adult participants. A structured questionnaire was used to assess risk factors for viral acquisition. Bivariate analysis was used to compare differences in sociodemographic characteristics. Significant risk factors were identified by stepwise logistic regression. A p-value <0.05 was considered significant.

Results. The prevalences of HBV, HCV and HIV were 8.8%, 10.0% and 12.9%, respectively, with urban/rural disparity. HBV/HCV positivity was higher among males than females. The reverse was true for HIV. Age was significantly associated with being HBV-, HCV- or HIV-positive. Communal use of a toothbrush was significantly associated with HBV positivity in the final model (odds ratio 2.46, 95% confidence interval 1.45 - 4.18).

Conclusions. The prevalence of HBV, HCV and HIV infection is high in Nigeria, with urban/rural disparity. HCV may be more of a public health concern than HBV in some communities. Population-based studies are required to provide vital data to inform optimal national control strategies.


Authors' affiliations

U C Okonkwo, Gastroenterology/Hepatology Unit, Department of Internal Medicine, University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, Cross River State, Nigeria

H Okpara, Department of Chemical Pathology, University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, Cross River State, Nigeria

A Otu, Infectious Disease Unit, Department of Internal Medicine, University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, Cross River State, Nigeria

S Ameh, Department of Community Medicine, University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, Cross River State, Nigeria

Y Ogarekpe, Department of Chemical Pathology, University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, Cross River State, Nigeria

H Osim, Gastroenterology/Hepatology Unit, Department of Internal Medicine, University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, Cross River State, Nigeria

M Inyama, Department of Haematology, University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, Cross River State, Nigeria

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Keywords

Public health; Epidemiology; HIV; Hepatitis; Nigeria; Adult population

Cite this article

South African Medical Journal 2017;107(4):346-351. DOI:10.7196/SAMJ.2017.v107i4.12198

Article History

Date submitted: 2017-03-29
Date published: 2017-03-29

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