Paper Title: Seroprevalence of antibodies to Hepatitis C virus in newly diagnosed HIV-1/2 positive patients in a tertiary hospital in Port Harcourt Nigeria
Authors: Iyalla C, Igbigbi E.E, Oboro L.I.
Background There is a growing burden of Hepatits C virus (HCV) and Human Immunodeficiency virus (HIV) co-infection, with worsening mortality and limitations in the treatment of HIV infected persons. This study was done to determine the seroprevalence of antibodies to HCV in newly diagnosed HIV patients. Materials and Methods: A desk review of laboratory records of serological testing for HIV and HCV performed in the Department of Haematology and Blood Transfusion of the University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital over a one year period, between July 2015 and June 2016 was done. Serologic test results and data of newly diagnosed HIV patients sent for confirmatory screening and routine HCV screening were obtained from the serology laboratory records. A total of 752 HIV positive cases were screened within this period. Laboratory tests for HIV-1/2 are performed using Determine kit (Alere, USA) and Uni- Gold kit (Trinity Biotech), while that of HCV was done using HCV rapid test strip (Hangzhou Biotest Biotech Co., Ltd, China and Citrus Diagnostics Inc., Canada). Results: Out of the 752 newly diagnosed HIV cases, 2 tested positive to antibodies to HCV. Thus the coinfection rate is 0.3%. HCV and HIV co-infection occurred only in females with 30years being the mean age of prevalence. Conclusion: The prevalence of HCV in HIV patients in this study is low. The low frequency of HIV/HCV coinfection may be explained by the fact that the high risk group of PWID and MSM are not so prevalent in our environment.