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Przegl Lek. 2006;63(7):539-42.

Prevalence and basic determinants of hepatitis C antibodies in medical students in Katowice, Poland.

Author information

1
Department of Epidemiology, Faculty of Public Health, Medical University of Silesia, Katowice, Poland. bbraczkowska@slam.katowice.pl

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Potential exposure of medical students to infectious material and the lack of specific prevention measures could contribute to an increased risk of HCV infection in this group.

OBJECTIVE:

To find out if the occurrence of HCV antibodies is more frequent in medical students than in non-medical students and to determine risk factors for HCV antibodies in students.

METHODS:

A cross-sectional study performed in 2003-2004 included 566 medical students (Medical University, Katowice) and 517 students of non-medical faculties (University, Katowice). HCV antibodies were determined using the 3rd generation EIA test, in doubtful cases a Western-blot INNO-LIA-HCV confirmation test was applied. Risk factors were identified based on questionnaire derived data. Between-group difference in the prevalence of positive anti-HCV tests was evaluated by means of ch2 test and candidates for risk factors were evaluated according to logistic odds ratios.

RESULTS:

Prevalence of HCV antibodies was statistically insignificantly lower in medical students (1.4%) than that in non-medical students (1.9%). In the group of 1068 subjects with no history of ever-diagnosed viral hepatitis the respective figures were 1.4% and 1.7%. In this group the presence of the positive anti-HCV tests was associated with dermal cosmetic interventions in the past (logOR=4.85), percutaneous medical interventions (excluding surgery) (logOR=3.18) and individual history of blood transfusion (logOR=1.71). However, the results were not statistically significant.

CONCLUSIONS:

Medical students at the Medical University in Katowice, Poland are not at increased risk of HCV infection. The findings suggest an important role of cosmetic and percutaneous medical interventions, and blood transfusion as risk factors for HCV infection.

PMID:
17203804
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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