Document Type : Research Article
Hepatitis C is a disease caused by enveloped, RNA virus belongs to Flaviviridae family. It causes inflammation of the liver that lead to liver cirrhosis and finally hepatocellular carcinoma. Its genome consists of open reading frame (ORF) codes for structural and non-structural proteins. The ORF have 5´ and 3´ UTR regions. Hepatitis C virus is cause of post transfusion hepatitis. Symptoms of HCV include fatigue, dark urine, belly pain, joint pain, itchy skin, sore muscles and jaundice. It is a blood-borne transmitted agent. Use of unsafe therapeutic injections also leads to HCV infection. Diagnosis of HCV infection can be done by various methods like Enzyme Immunoassay (EIA) and Recombinant Immunoblot Assay (RIBA). The aim of this study is to estimate seroprevalence of Hepatitis-C in both sexes and different age groups in hospital based general population. And to study the trends of HCV infections in a tertiary hospital located at Northern India.
A prospective study was conducted for four months (January-April) at Tertiary Hospital in Northern India. Total numbers of 1643 blood samples were screened for the presence of anti-HCV antibodies in patient’s serum. Samples were tested by HCV TRI-DOT rapid test. Positive samples were retested by SD BIOLINE HCV rapid test and confirmed by ELISA.Out of 1643, 102 (6.2%) samples were HCV positive. Among seropositive samples, 48 were males (2.9%) and 54 were females (3.2%). HCV seropositivity was shown by 40 IPD patients (2.4%), 52 OPD patients (3.1%) and 10 ICU patients (0.6%). Among departments, patients from Recovery showed (0.6%), General ward (1.0%), Private room (0.2%), Neurology lab (0.1%) and Emergency (0.3%) showed HCV seropositivity. On analyzing age-wise seropositivity, it was found that maximum seropositivity was seen in 30-40 years (2.9%) followed by >55 years (1.4%), 40-55 years (1.2%) and<30 years (0.5%). Analysis of patients on the basis of risk factors showed that 17 had history of surgical operation (1.0%), 18 had history of blood transfusion (1.0%), 6 had history of dental procedure (0.3%), 25 showed history of injecting drug use (1.5%), 21 used contaminated syringes (1.2%) and 15 patients was under haemodialysis (0.9%). Professional health worker should protect themselves while handling infected blood. Counselling and testing should be done for those who are at risk for infection.