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J Infect Dis. 1995 Mar;171(3):693-6.

The risk of human T cell leukemia virus and viral hepatitis infection among US Marines stationed in Okinawa, Japan.

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  • 1Department of Health Sciences and Epidemiology, Naval Health Research Center, Graduate School of Public Health, San Diego, California 92186-5122.


The prevalence and incidence of human T cell leukemia virus type I/II (HTLV-I/II) and hepatitis A, B, and C virus infection were determined among US Marines stationed in Okinawa, Japan. Of 2875 personnel, 2 (0.07%) had antibody to HTLV-I/II. After 1-3 years, no HTLV seroconversions were observed, although 23% reported sexual contact with Okinawans. Of 1010 hepatitis-tested marines, 121 (12%) had antibody to hepatitis A virus (anti-HAV), 26 (2.6%) had antibody to hepatitis B core antigen (anti-HBc), and 2 (0.2%) had antibody to hepatitis C virus (anti-HCV). On follow-up, 1 subject seroconverted to anti-HAV, 8 to anti-HBc, and none to anti-HCV. Most marines with recent hepatitis B infection were young, single, and enlisted and had been on short deployments to other countries in Southeast Asia. Marines stationed in Okinawa are not at high risk for HTLV infection but are at increased risk for hepatitis B infection and should be considered for vaccination.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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