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Ugeskr Laeger. 1999 Aug 2;161(31):4393-6.

[Occurrence of hepatitis B and C among mentally retarded].

[Article in Danish]

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H:S Amager Hospital, HBA, medicinsk afdeling, BST KĂžbenhavns Kommune.


The objective of this study was to examine whether the prevalence of hepatitis C, like hepatitis B, is increased among the mentally retarded in Denmark. The prevalence of serological markers of hepatitis B and C was examined in an institution for the mentally retarded. A total of 126 out of 178 inhabitants (71%) with a median age of 49 years (range 23-78) participated. All subjects were anti-HCV-negative by third generation ELISA antibody test. A total of 45 (35.7%) subjects were anti-HBc-positive and 10 (7.9%) were HBsAg-positive. Among subjects with Down's syndrome (n = 20), 55% were anti-HBc-positive and 30% were HBsAg-positive as compared to 32% and 3.8% respectively among others. In conclusion, hepatitis C infection seems to be uncommon among mentally retarded persons in Denmark and the risk of acquiring infection not significantly increased as compared to that of the general population. The prevalence of serological markers for hepatitis B was high and comparable to previous studies in this population.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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