Detection Of Hepatitis C And Hepatitis B Virus Infection Among Prison Inmates And Psychiatric Patients

Project and Seminar Material for Microbiology

Project and Seminar Material for Microbiology


There is high risk of contracting hepatitis B and C among individuals with psychotic disorders due to lifestyle factors and prisoners globally continue to demonstrate a higher prevalence of Hepatitis B and C than the general population. This study was aimed at determining the seroprevalence of HCV and HBV and to detect hepatitis C virus (HCV) among prison inmates and psychiatric patients in Kaduna Metropolis. A total of 276 (153 prison inmates and 123 psychiatric patients) serum samples were tested for anti-HCV and Hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) using third generation Enzyme Linked Immunosorbent Assay (ELISA) and RDT method respectively.

Hepatitis C virus genome was detected in ten (10) serum samples using reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). An overall anti-HCV IgM prevalence of 10.14% (28/276), anti- HCV IgG prevalence of 8.69% (24/276) and HBsAg prevalence of 6.15% (17/276) was established. A 0.36% (1/276) HCV/HBV co-infection rate was obtained. Among the inmates, an anti-HCV IgM and IgG prevalence of 10.45% (16/153) and 8.5% (13/153) respectively was obtained with a 9.2% (14/153) HBsAg prevalence. An HBsAg, anti-HCV IgM and anti-HCV IgG prevalence of 2.4% (3/123), 9.75% (12/123) and 8.9% (11/123) respectively was obtained among the psychiatric patients.

The highest HCV antibody prevalence was obtained among the female subjects (14.1% for IgM and 8.4% for IgG). No female tested positive for HBsAg. Subjects aged ≥48 years had the highest HCV prevalence (28.9%: 13/45 for IgM and 31.1%: 14/45 for IgG) while those within age group 28-32 years had the highest HBsAg prevalence (11.7%: 7/60). Age was observed to be associated with HCV infection (p=0.00). Viremia was evaluated by amplifying conserved untranslated region of HCV genome and bands of 244bp were observed. There was no statistically significant association between the viral infections and demographics.

Presence of tattoo/scarification and alcohol intake were statistically associated with HCV infection while clothes sharing was associated with HBsAg among the inmates. Hepatitis C virus infection was statistically associated with blood transfusion, alcohol intake, presence of tattoo/scarification, sexual experience and shaving equipment sharing among the psychiatric patients while HBsAg was associated with only clothes sharing. This study established the circulation of HBV and HCV among inmates and psychiatric patients in Kaduna State. These individuals should therefore be screened for these viruses for appropriate clinical management and effective prevention.

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