Prevalence of Hepatitis C Virus (HCV) infection among jaundiced children

Nazir Ahmed, Mohd Irshad, Mohd Ashraf, Yasmeena Akhter, Gh Rasool Wani


Background: Viral hepatitis continues to be major public health problem in both developing and developed countries. Acute hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection tends to be mild and insidious in onset, with long term health and economic implications. The aim of the study was to determine prevalence of HC virus infection in hospitalized jaundiced children of Kashmir.

Methods: This hospital based prospective study was conducted in the department of pediatric Govt Medical Collage Srinagar over a period of 1year from October 2007 to September 2008. A total of 100 patients were included in this study. Oral questionnaire pertaining to various aspects of HCV virus infection was administered and serum sample of all patients were analyzed for anti-hepatitis C virus antibody by ELISA method using Zhongshan HCV ELISA kit china. Diagnosis was confirmed in positive cases by PCR for HCV RNA.

Results: Only two patients out of 100 patients were positive for hepatitis C virus antibody, both patients were admitted as chronic liver disease (CLD), one being 15 years old male and other 9 years old female. Seventy-four patients were positive for Hepatitis A, IgM antibody, out of which 8 patients had fulminant hepatic failure and one patient was HBsAg positive.

Conclusions: This study highlights the daunting prevalence of HCV infection in our setup and implicates necessity for raising the awareness and screening of HCV-high risk individuals to decrease mortality and morbidity associated with Hepatitis C virus infection.


Hepatitis C, Infection, Prevalence

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