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Hepatol Int. 2009 Jun;3(2):343-55. doi: 10.1007/s12072-008-9115-9. Epub 2008 Dec 19.

A low steady HBsAg seroprevalence is associated with a low incidence of HBV-related liver cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma in Mexico: a systematic review.

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Department of Molecular Biology in Medicine, Civil Hospital of Guadalajara, "Fray Antonio Alcalde" and Health Sciences University Center, University of Guadalajara, P.O. Box 2-500, 44280, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico,


To address the relationship between hepatitis B virus (HBV) endemicity and HBV-related liver diseases in Mexico. Research literature reporting on HBsAg and antibody to hepatitis B core antigen (anti-HBc) prevalence in Mexican study groups were searched in NLM Gateway, PubMed, IMBIOMED, and others. Weighted mean prevalence (WMP) was calculated from the results of each study group. A total of 50 studies were analyzed. Three nationwide surveys revealed an HBsAg seroprevalence of less than 0.3%. Horizontal transmission of HBV infection occurred mainly by sexual activity and exposure to both contaminated surgical equipment and body fluids. High-risk groups exposed to these factors included healthcare workers, pregnant women, female sex workers, hemodialysis patients, and emergency department attendees with an HBsAg WMP ranging from 1.05% (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.68-1.43) to 14.3% (95% CI, 9.5-19.1). A higher prevalence of anti-HBc in adults than those younger than 20 years was associated with the main risk factors. Anti-HBc WMP ranged from 3.13% (95% CI, 3.01-3.24) in blood donors to 27.7% (95% CI, 21.6-33.9) in hemodialysis patients. A heterogeneous distribution of HBV infection was detected, mainly in native Mexican groups with a high anti-HBc WMP of 42.0% (95% CI, 39.5-44.3) but with a low HBsAg WMP of 2.9% (95% CI 2.08-3.75). Estimations of the Mexican population growth rate and main risk factors suggest that HBsAg seroprevalence has remained steady since 1974. A low HBsAg prevalence is related to the low incidence of HBV-related liver cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) previously reported in Mexico.

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