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J Infect Dis. 1992 Apr;165(4):716-9.

Risk of viral hepatitis among military personnel assigned to US Navy ships.

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Department of Internal Medicine, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda Naval Hospital, Maryland.


A prevalence study of 2072 male US shipboard military personnel scheduled for deployment to South America/West Africa and the Mediterranean was conducted to determine whether serologic evidence of prior hepatitis A, B, or C infection is associated with exposure in foreign countries. There were 210 subjects (10.1%) who had antibodies to hepatitis A virus (anti-HAV), 76 (3.7%) to hepatitis B core antigen (anti-HBc), and 9 (0.4%) to hepatitis C virus (anti-HCV). By multivariate analysis, anti-HAV seropositivity was independently associated with age, non-white racial/ethnic groups, birth outside of the United States, and prior Caribbean deployment for less than 1 year. Anti-HBc seropositivity was independently associated with black and Filipino race/ethnicity, foreign birth, a history of a sexually transmitted disease, South Pacific/Indian Ocean deployment (less than 12 months), and South Pacific or Mediterranean duty for (greater than 1 year). No geographic risk factors were associated with anti-HCV positivity. These data indicate that military personnel deployed outside the United States are at increased risk of viral hepatitis infection and should be considered for vaccination.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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