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Medicina 2018, 54(1), 9; https://doi.org/10.3390/medicina54010009

A Population-Based Surveillance Study on the Epidemiology of Hepatitis C in Estonia

1
Department of Gastroenterology, Tartu University Hospital, University of Tartu, 51014 Tartu, Estonia
2
Internal Disease Clinic, Tartu University Hospital, University of Tartu, 51014 Tartu, Estonia
3
Department of Gastroenterology, East Tallinn Central Hospital, 10138 Tallinn, Estonia
4
Department of Gastroenterology and Infectios Diseases Clinic, West Tallinn Central Hospital, 10138 Tallinn, Estonia
5
Internal Disease Clinic, Pärnu Hospital, 80010 Pärnu, Estonia
6
Internal Disease Clinic, East Viru Central Hospital, 31024 Kohtla-Järve, Estonia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 18 February 2018 / Revised: 20 March 2018 / Accepted: 21 March 2018 / Published: 25 March 2018
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Abstract

Background and objective: The hepatitis C virus (HCV)-infected patients serve as a reservoir for transmission of the disease to others and are at risk of developing chronic hepatitis C, cirrhosis, and hepatocellular carcinoma. Although the epidemiological data of high rate HCV infection have been obtained in many countries, such data are insufficient in Estonia. Therefore, the aim of the study was to analyze country-specific data on HCV patients. Materials and methods: Data about age, gender, diagnosis, possible risk factors, coinfections, HCV genotypes, liver fibrosis stages and extrahepatic manifestations were collected from 518 patients. Results: The most common risk factors for hepatitis C were injection drug use and tattooing in the 30–39 and 40–49 year age groups, and blood transfusion in the 50–59 and 60–69 year age groups. The other risk factors established were profession-related factors and sexual contact. The prevailing viral genotype among the HCV infected patients was genotype 1 (69% of the patients) followed by genotype 3 (25%). Genotypes 1 and 3 correlated with blood transfusions before 1994, drug injections and tattooing. Conclusions: Our study provides the best representation of genotype distribution across Estonia. As a result of the study, valuable data has been collected on hepatitis C patients in Estonia. View Full-Text
Keywords: hepatitis C virus; epidemiology; hepatitis C risk factors; genotypes hepatitis C virus; epidemiology; hepatitis C risk factors; genotypes
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Mansberg, K.; Kull, K.; Salupere, R.; Prükk, T.; Margus, B.; Kariis, T.; Remmel, T.; Suurmaa, K.; Ott, K.; Jaago, K.; Šmidt, J. A Population-Based Surveillance Study on the Epidemiology of Hepatitis C in Estonia. Medicina 2018, 54, 9.

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