Seroprevalence and risk factors of hepatitis B and C virus infections in female workers of Lao garment factories.
ABSTRACT: The prevalence of hepatitis B and C virus infections may be higher in vulnerable populations or in individuals likely to be exposed through risk behaviors such as female garment factory workers in Lao People's Democratic Republic. A cross-sectional study was performed on 400 female garment workers in Vientiane Capital. Women were tested for hepatitis B virus surface antigen and antibodies against hepatitis B core, surface antigen and hepatitis C virus using commercial Enzyme-linked immuno-absorbent assays. Participants completed a standardized questionnaire about potential risk factors for both infections. Sixteen women (4±1.9%) were HBsAg carriers, 187 (47%) had anti-HBc, 116 (29%) anti-HBs and 7 (1.8±1.3%) anti-HCV antibodies. Three factors were significantly associated with the presence of anti-HBc (indicating previous exposure to HBV): (i) residence in dormitories, (ii) more than one sexual partner, (iii) history of abortion. Despite a high risk of exposure, the prevalence of anti HBV and anti HCV infection markers in this sample of female workers was not higher than in the Lao general population. Our data suggest that exposure to HBV happens later during life and was significantly associated with sexual risk behavior. Thus, this study highlights the vulnerability of these women who were mostly young, uneducated, unvaccinated, of rural origin and were not aware of the risk of infections. An occupational health program targeting the female factory workers should be implemented in Lao PDR.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Due to numerous blood exposures hospital staff are at risk of acquiring hepatitis B virus (HBV) infections. This study aimed at estimating prevalence of HBV, associated risk factors and HBV vaccination among Polish health care workers (HCWs). METHODS:A cross-sectional sero-survey was conducted (October 2016-January 2018) in 10 randomly selected hospitals from two provinces: of low and high incidence of HBV, with the use of an anonymous, self- administered questionnaire. Blood samples were screened for hepatitis B core antibodies (anti-HBc) with enzyme immunoassay. RESULTS:Of the 306 participating HCWs, 88.6% were females, 69.9% nurses (mean age 47.8?±?9.0?years). HBV vaccination was reported by 94.2%, participants (4.7% with 2 doses, 58.1% with 3 doses, 37.2% took a booster), but of these 75.1% reported no post-immunization serology. The sero-prevalence of anti-HBc was 12.1% (95%CI 8.4-15.7%); only 11.1% had ever screened themselves for HBV infection. Out of 37 anti-HBc positive HCWs, 29 reported being vaccinated for HBV; 10.5% vaccinated HCWs were anti-HBc positive. Regarding other occupational risk factors, 27.8% had experienced a sharp injury (SI) in the last year, 80.0% of incidents were not reported. The use of safety devices (SD) was 86.3%; 35.9% participants used to recap a needle. Older age (OR?=?4.24), lack of HBV vaccination (OR?=?7.42), working at the province of high HBV incidence in the general population (OR?=?2.69) were each predictors of participant's HBV infection. CONCLUSIONS:High anti-HBc seroprevalence was found in hospital staff with older generation particularly constituting a risk group. Unsatisfactory vaccination coverage and the use of SDs, needle recapping and under-reporting of SIs were main modifiable risk factors regarding HBV infection. The study provides evidence of the protective role of HBV vaccine, as well as the possible effect of HBV incidence in the general population on HCW's anti-HBc seropositivity. Universal vaccination, followed by strict policies to confirm immunity, better compliance with infection-control practices and widespread implementation of SDs should be enforced to protect hospital staff from occupationally acquired HBV infections.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Occult Hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection (OBI) is defined as the presence of HBV-DNA in the liver or serum with undetectable hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg). Hemodialysis (HD) patients are at risk of acquiring parenterally transmitted infections. OBJECTIVES:The aim of this study was to assess the prevalence of OBI in HD patients. PATIENTS AND METHODS:A hundred HBsAg negative HD patients were included in this study from main dialysis units in Tehran, Iran. HBsAg, hepatitis B surface antibody (anti-HBs), hepatitis B core antibody (anti-HBc) and liver enzymes levels were examined in all subjects. The presence of HBV-DNA was determined in plasma samples using real-time PCR. RESULTS:A hundredpatients with a mean age of 58.5 ± 16.1 years were enrolled in this study. In total, 56.7% were male and 43.3% female. Anti-HBs, anti-HBc, anti-HCV and anti-HIV were detected in 56.7%, 2%, 5.2% and 1% of patients, respectively. Isolated anti-HBc was detected in 2% of cases. HBV-DNA was detected in 1% of HBsAg negative patients. CONCLUSIONS:This study showed a low rate of isolated anti-HBc and occult HBV infection in HD patients. It can be due to improvement of people's knowledge about HBV transmission routes, HBV vaccination of HD patients and regular surveillance of HBV infection.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection is a world health problem with an estimated 257 million chronically infected people. Indonesia, with 7.1% prevalence of hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg), is classified as a moderately endemic country. Healthcare workers (HCWs) are at high occupational risk for HBV infection and potentially becoming transmitters for further infections. In Indonesia, the extent of hepatitis B among HCWs and specific control strategy are not available. This study evaluated the seroprevalence of HBV infection and associated risk factors in HCWs from four areas in South Sulawesi, Indonesia. METHODS:A total of 467 HCWs (median age 28 years, male/female 89/378) were recruited. All HCWs were classified into three age groups (<?20-29, 30-39, and???40 years old), three work types (administration, non-intervention, and intervention), and three service periods (<?5, 5-9, and???10 years). Data on socio-demographic characteristics and risk factors were obtained by questionnaire and serum samples were tested for HBV markers (HBsAg, its antibody [anti-HBs], and antibody to core antigen [anti-HBc]. Chi-square or Fisher's exact test was used to determine differences in categorical variables, while risk factors were reported as odds ratios (OR). RESULTS:The prevalence of current HBV infection (HBsAg+), exposure to HBV (anti-HBc+), and immunity to HBV (anti-HBs+) was 6.2, 19.2, and 26.1%, respectively. Two thirds (66.17%) of all HCWs did not express any of HBV markers. In relation to the age groups, intervention work-type, and service period of HCWs, increasing trends were observed in the exposure to HBV (p?<?0.001, p?<?0.001, and p?<?0.010, respectively) and the immunity to HBV by natural infection (HBsAg-, anti-HBc+, anti-HBs+) (p?=?0.004, p?<?0.001, and p?<?0.010, respectively). Needlestick injury contributed the highest risk factor (OR?=?1.71; 95% CI: 1.05-2.77; p?=?0.029) for infection acquisition, which mostly occurred in the intervention group (p?=?0.046). CONCLUSION:Exposure to HBV showed significant association with HCWs' age, work type, and service period. Needlestick injury was the highest risk factor for the acquisition of HBV, with highest events in the intervention work-type. Two thirds of HCWs were still susceptible to HBV infection. Intervention strategies at the national level are required to mount prevention, control, and management of HBV infection in HCWs.
Project description:Prevalence and risk factors for isolated antibody to hepatitis B core antigen (anti-HBc) and occult hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection are not well known in human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1)-infected pregnant women. It is unclear if women with occult infections are at risk of transmitting HBV to their infants.HIV-1-infected and HBV surface antigen (HBsAg)-negative pregnant women were tested for antibody to HBsAg (anti-HBs) and anti-HBc using enzyme immunoassay. Women with isolated anti-HBc were assessed for occult HBV infection, defined as HBV DNA levels >15 IU/mL, using the Abbott RealTime HBV DNA assay. Infants born to women with isolated anti-HBc and detectable HBV DNA were tested at 4 months of age for HBV DNA. Logistic regression analysis was used to identify factors associated with isolated anti-HBc and occult HBV infection.Among 1812 HIV-infected pregnant women, 1682 were HBsAg negative. Fourteen percent (95% confidence interval [CI], 12%-15%) of HBsAg-negative women had an isolated anti-HBc that was independently associated with low CD4 count, age >35 years, birth in northern Thailand, and positive anti-hepatitis C virus serology. Occult HBV infection was identified in 24% (95% CI, 18%-30%) of women with isolated anti-HBc, representing 2.6% (95% CI, 1.9%-3.5%) of HIV-1-infected pregnant women, and was inversely associated with HIV RNA levels. None of the women with isolated anti-HBc and occult HBV infection transmitted HBV to their infants.HIV-1-infected pregnant women with isolated anti-HBc and occult HBV infection have very low HBV DNA levels and are thus at very low risk to transmit HBV to their infants.
Project description:<b>Background: </b>Occult hepatitis B (OHB) is a major concern in HIV infected patients as it associates with a high risk of HBV reactivation and disease progression. However, data on the prevalence of OHB among HIV positive patients in Ethiopia is lacking. This study aims to determine the prevalence of OHB in HBV/HIV co-infected patients from Gondar, Ethiopia.<br><br><b>Methods: </b>A total of 308 consented HIV positive patients were recruited from the University of Gondar Teaching Hospital, Ethiopia. Clinical and demographic data of the participants were recorded. Plasma was tested for HBsAg and anti-HBc using commercial assays (Abbott Architect). In HBsAg negative anti-HBc positive patient samples, total DNA was isolated and amplified using nested PCR with primers specific to HBV polymerase, surface and pre-core/core regions, followed by Sanger sequencing and HBV mutational analysis using MEGA 7.0.<br><br><b>Results: </b>Of the total study subjects, 62.7% were female, median age 38.4 years, interquartile range (IQR): 18-68, and 208 (67.5%) had lifestyle risk factors for HBV acquisition. Two hundred and ninety-one study subjects were HIV+/HBsAg-, out of which 115 (39.5%) were positive for anti-HBc. Occult hepatitis B was detected in 19.1% (22/115) of anti-HBc positive HIV patients. HBV genotype D was the predominant genotype (81%) among OHB positive patients. Mutations associated with HBV drug resistance, HBV reactivation, and HCC risk were detected in 23% (5/22), 14% (3/22) and 45.5% (10/22) of patients, respectively.<br><br><b>Conclusion: </b>This study found a high rate of occult hepatitis B in HIV patients. Further, high rates of mutations associated with HBV reactivation, drug resistance, and HCC risk were detected in these patients. These data highlighted the need for integrating OHB screening for proper management of liver diseases in HIV patients.
Project description:The incidence of hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection has been declining thanks to the universal hepatitis B infant immunization program. Nevertheless, young adults born before the program implementation might have acquired HBV in early childhood or remain susceptible to infection. This study aimed to evaluate hepatitis B epidemiology in asymptomatic young adult population in Ternate, eastern Indonesia. Serum samples of 376 subjects (aged 17-25, mean 19.82 ± 1.69 years; male/female 138/238) were screened for HBV parameters serologically (HBV surface antigen [HBsAg]; its antibody [anti-HBs]; anti-core antigen [anti-HBc]), and molecularly (HBV DNA). HBsAg, anti-HBc, anti-HBs, and HBV DNA prevalence were 15.7%, 36.2%, 24.2%, and 27.9%, respectively, with male predominance. Of all subjects, 13.0% were HBsAg negative with detectable HBV DNA (occult hepatitis B [OHB]), and 56.4% showed negativity for all seromarkers. This population showed high hepatitis B prevalence with substantial occurrence of OHB. However, a high percentage of the population were still susceptible and at risk of HBV infection. This study emphasizes the necessity to improve prevention strategies to screen and manage HBV carriers, including the adoption of catch-up or booster vaccination targeted to young adult populations. Investigations on the roles of host-virus interactions associated with OHB and its implications are warranted.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Guyana expanded its HIV response in 2005 but the epidemiology of hepatitis B virus (HBV) and hepatitis C virus (HCV) infections has not been characterized. METHODS:The 2011 Seroprevalence and Behavioral Epidemiology Risk Survey for HIV and STIs collected biologic specimens with demographic and behavioral data from a representative sample of Guyana military personnel. Diagnostics included commercial serum: HIV antibody; total antibody to hepatitis B core (anti-HBc); IgM anti-HBc; hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg); anti-HBs; antibody to HCV with confirmatory testing; and HBV DNA sequencing with S gene fragment phylogenetic analysis. Chi-square, p-values and prevalence ratios determined statistical significance. RESULTS:Among 480 participants providing serologic specimens, 176 (36.7%) tested anti-HBc-positive. Overall, 19 (4.0%) participants tested HBsAg-positive; 17 (89.5%) of the HBsAg-positive participants also had detectable anti-HBc, including 1 (5.3%) IgM anti-HBc-positive male. Four (6.8%) females with available HBV testing were HBsAg-positive, all aged 23-29 years. Sixteen (16, 84.2%) HBsAg-positive participants had sufficient specimen for DNA testing. All 16 had detectable HBV DNA, 4 with viral load >2x104IU/ml. Sequencing found: 12 genotype (gt) A1 with 99.9% genetic identity between 1 IgM anti-HBc-positive and 1 anti-HBc-negative; 2 gtD1; and 2 with insufficient specimen. No statistically significant associations between risk factors and HBV infection were identified. CONCLUSIONS:Integrated HIV surveillance identified likely recent adult HBV transmission, current HBV infection among females of reproductive age, moderate HBV infection prevalence (all gtA1 and D1), no HCV infections and low HIV frequency among Guyana military personnel. Integrated HIV surveillance helped characterize HBV and HCV epidemiology, including probable recent transmission, prompting targeted responses to control ongoing HBV transmission and examination of hepatitis B vaccine policies.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Women in Bangladesh experience high rates of Intimate Partner Violence (IPV). IPV is more prevalent against income earning women compared to their non-earning counterparts, and Workplace Violence (WPV) is also common. Such violence is a violation of women's rights, and also constrains them from contributing to their personal growth, household, community and the economy at large. There is limited evidence on what works to prevent IPV and WPV amongst garment workers. This paper describes an evaluation of HERrespect, an intervention which aims to reduce IPV and WPV against female garment workers in and around Dhaka, Bangladesh. METHODS:The trial employs a quasi-experimental design, with four intervention and four control factories. In the intervention factories a randomly selected cohort of married female line workers, a cohort of male line workers, and all middle management staff received the intervention. The intervention strategies involved (1) gender transformative group-based training for workers and management staff; (2) joint session between workers (15 female and male) and middle-management staff; (3) factory-wide activities; (4) awareness raising among top management; (5) factory policy review and development and 6) a community based campaign. For the evaluation, a cohort of randomly selected female workers and a cohort of selected management staff have been established. All workers (n?=?800) and management staff (n?=?395) from these cohorts were interviewed at baseline using two different questionnaires, and will be interviewed in the endline, 24 months post-baseline. Intention to treat analysis will be used for assessing the impact of HERrespect, comparing the intervention and control factories. DISCUSSION:To our knowledge this is the first study that seeks to evaluate the impact on IPV and WPV, of group sessions with female workers, male workers, and management; factory-wide campaigns and a community intervention among female garment workers in Bangladesh. Apart from informing programmers and policy makers about intervention effectiveness in reducing IPV and WPV against female garment workers this study will also present evidence on an intervention tailored to the situation in the garment sector, which makes HERrespect scalable. TRIAL REGISTRATION:ClinicalTrials.gov NCT03304015, retrospectively registered on October 06, 2017.
Project description:BACKGROUND:There are limited data on the prevalence of the hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection in the agricultural population worldwide. OBJECTIVES:This study aimed to determine the prevalence of HBV infection and associated risk factors in the reproductive-age female farmworker. MATERIALS AND METHODS:This cross-sectional study was conducted between January and April 2013 in southeastern region (SAR) of Turkey. A community-based representative agricultural sample (n = 705) from the agricultural areas of nine provinces of SAR was randomly determined by clustering method using Epi Info software. Questionnaires including demographic information and risk factors of HBV were administered to participants. The presence of HBsAg, anti-HBs, anti-HBc, and anti-HBe antibodies in blood samples were measured by ELISA. RESULTS:The prevalence of the HBsAg, anti-HBs, anti-HBc, anti-HBe antibodies, and seropositivity were 5.7%, 25.9%, 28.9%, 16.4%, and 36.7%, respectively. There was no association between the HBsAg and the size of the household, age, education level, parity, and place of birth while the prevalence of HBsAg was higher in seasonal migratory farmworkers and people living in urban areas and the prevalence of anti-HBs antibody was significantly higher in women ? 35 years of age, those with a high parity, and those who gave birth without the assistance of health professionals (P < 0.05). The risk for HBV infection in the seasonal migratory group was 4.3 times higher in comparison to local workers (P = 0.00; OR = 4.3; 95% CI, 2.2-8.4), with a prevalence rate of 11%. CONCLUSIONS:The monitoring of at-risk groups like seasonal migratory farmworkers is necessary to strengthen the healthcare service provided to this population.
Project description:BACKGROUND:The ready-made garment industry in Bangladesh not only contributes to the nation's economic development, but has created income opportunities for women, benefiting their whole family. However, these benefits come at considerable cost to the women. This research examines how the work environment and gendered family role in this conservative society affect the health of the female industrial workers. METHODS:A qualitative study employed in-depth interviews (n-20) and focus group discussions with female garment workers (n-4) in two cities of Dhaka district. Further, key informant interviews (n?=?4) with factory doctors, along with eight workplace observations were conducted to explore the lived experience of female workers' health issues. Interview transcripts were coded in Atlas-ti, 5.2. The data were analysed using thematic analysis approach. The themes are illustrated with case narratives. RESULTS:The female workers reported that their work has led to back and joint pain, continuous headache, eye pain and difficulty in breathing associated with inhaling fabric dust. Inadequate lighting, constantly sitting in one position without back rest and continuous noise from hundreds of machines makes them feel permanently tired. Further, the female workers reported that working in the factory and meeting the expectations of the families at home has doubled their workload. The doctors indicated that the physical work environment, their low job status and the nature of the job affect the health of female workers. CONCLUSION:This study found that female workers in the ready-made garment industry face a high risk of health problems. Both government and non-government organizations need to be better involved in designing interventions targeting these women, to protect them from such health risks. In addition, recognition by the whole society of the important role the women play in the economy is needed, so that support by both family and society can be improved.