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BMC Hematol. 2018 Sep 15;18:24. doi: 10.1186/s12878-018-0115-2. eCollection 2018.

Seroprevalence and trends of transfusion transmitted infections at Harar blood bank in Harari regional state, Eastern Ethiopia: eight years retrospective study.

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College of Health and Medical Sciences, Department of Medical Laboratory Sciences, Haramaya University, P.O. Box 235, Harar, Ethiopia.



The use of unscreened blood exposes the patient to many transfusion transmitted infections including Hepatitis B Virus (HBV), Hepatitis C virus (HCV), Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), and syphilis, among others. Thus, blood transfusion demands for meticulous pre-transfusion testing and screening. Trends of transfusion transmitted infections are important to take appropriate measures on blood bank services. Therefore the aim of this study was to assess seroprevalence and trends of transfusion transmitted infections at Harar blood bank in Harari regional state, Eastern Ethiopia from 2008 to 2015.


A retrospective cross-sectional study was employed to review blood donors' history and laboratory tests records from November 16-December 31, 2017. All records of blood donors having vividly documented history and laboratory tests were reviewed by data collectors. All data were entered into EPI data version 3.1. It was exported and analyzed with Statistical Package for the Social Sciences version 16 soft ware.


A total of 11, 382 blood donors' history and laboratory tests records were reviewed. Majority of them were males (82.6%), 57.6 % were in the age group of 17 to 25 years and 99.9% donors donated blood for the first time. The overall seroprevalence of transfusion transmitted infections (HBV, HIV, HCV and syphilis combined) was found to be 6.6%. The prevalence of HBV, HIV, HCV and syphilis were found to be 4.4%, 0.6%, 0.8% and 1.1%, respectively. The trend in prevalence of syphilis and HCV was statistical significant by year (p< 0.05). Those donors in the age group of 26-35 years (AOR: 2.1; 95% CI: 1.2,3.6), 36-45 years (AOR: 4.1; 95% CI: 2.4,7.1) and greater than 46 years (AOR:4.6; 95% CI: 2.3,9.1) were more likely to be infected with syphilis compared to the age group of 17-25 years. Male were more likely to be infected with HBV (AOR: 1.9; 95% CI: 1.4, 2.5) than females.


The magnitude of transfusion transmitted infections was lower than the previous studies conducted in Ethiopia. However, the decline in trends of transfusion transmitted infections has not been significant for some pathogens. Therefore, strict adherence with the criteria of preliminary blood donor selection should be implemented to reduce the amount of blood being withdrawn from transfusion after collection and screening.


Blood bank; Eastern Ethiopia; Harar; Hepatitis B virus; Hepatitis C virus; Human immunodeficiency virus; Syphilis; Transfusion transmitted infections

Conflict of interest statement

Ethical clearance for the study was obtained from the Institutional Health Research Ethics Review Committee (IHRERC) of Haramaya University. Letter support was written to Harar Red cross society blood bank from College of Health and Medical Sciences, Haramaya University. The objectives, risk and the benefits of the study was explained to head of Harar Red cross society Blood bank. Information obtained during the study was kept confidential and only intended for research purpose. Name or any identifiers of blood donors was not collected at time of review their cards.Not applicableThe authors declare that they have no competing interests.Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.

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