Department of Public Health Sciences

Prevalence of hepatitis C virus antibodies among patients infected with human immunodeficiency virus

Hayashi, P. H., N. Flynn, S. A. McCurdy, I. K. Kuramoto, P. V. Holland and J. B. Zeldis

J Med Virol. 1991. 33(3):177-180.

A study was undertaken to determine the prevalence and risk factors for serological evidence of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection in patients infected with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). Tests for anti- HCV antibody were carried out by enzyme-linked immunoassay (EIA) on 101 HIV-infected patients from two university-based outpatient clinics. Anti-HCV antibody reactive samples were tested by using a recombinant immunoblot assay (RIBA) for HCV antibodies. Fourteen of 101 (13.9%) HIV- infected patients were anti-HCV reactive by EIA. Of these 14, only seven were reactive by RIBA: four were intravenous drug users as a sole risk factor for HIV infection; and the remaining three acquired HIV by blood transfusion, contaminated instrument exposure or IV drug use and sexual contact. Acquisition of HIV by sexual activity alone was not associated with HCV infection. It is concluded that HCV infection is found in approximately 7% of a university HIV clinic population. False- positive anti-HCV antibody serology may lead to overestimation of the prevalence of HCV infection. Female sex and intravenous drug use are significantly associated with HCV infection among HIV-infected individuals.

Keywords: Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome/complications/epidemiology/*immunology, Adult, Aged, Antigens, Viral/immunology, California/epidemiology, Female, Hepatitis Antibodies/*analysis, Hepatitis C/complications/epidemiology/*immunology, Hepatitis C-Like Viruses/*immunology, Human, Male, Middle Age, Risk Factors

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