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Iran Red Crescent Med J. 2012 May;14(5):283-8. Epub 2012 May 30.

Seroepidemiology of HBV infection in South-East of iran; a population based study.

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Research Center for Infectious Disease and Tropical Medicine, Zahedan University of Medical Sciences, Zahedan, Iran.



Hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection is a major risk factor of cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma affecting billions of people globally. Since information on its prevalence in general population is mandatory for formulating effective policies, this population based serological survey was conducted in Sistan and Baluchistan, where no previous epidemiological data were available.


Using random cluster sampling 3989 healthy subjects were selected from 9 districts of Sistan and Baluchistan Province in southeastern Iran. The subjects' age ranged from 6 to 65 years old. Serum samples were tested for HBcAb, HBsAg. Screening tests were carried out by the third generation of ELISA. Various risk factors were recorded and multivariate analysis was performed.


The prevalence of HBsAg and HBcAb in Sistan and Baluchistan was 3.38% (95% CI 2.85; 3.98) and 23.58% (95% CI 22.29; 24.93) respectively. We found 8 cases of positive anti-HDV antibody. Predictors of HBsAg or HBcAb in multivariate analysis were age, marital status and addiction.


The rate of HBV infection in Sistan and Baluchistan was higher than other parts of Iran. Approximately 25% of general population in this province had previous exposure to HBV and 3% were HBsAg carriers. Intrafamilial and addiction were major routes of HBV transmission in this province.


Epidemiology; HBV; Hepatitis; Iran


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